RCCA chief medical officer helps share latest advances, best practices and hope in the treatment of MBC
On Nov. 15, Iuliana Shapira, MD, Chief Medical Officer at Regional Cancer Care Associates (RCCA) — a leading provider of individualized and highly compassionate care for cancer and blood disorders for nearly 40 years with more than 125 cancer specialists practicing at 28 care centers throughout New Jersey, Connecticut, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and the Washington, D.C. area — was among the esteemed roster of experts who presented at the 2020 Komen New Jersey Virtual Metastatic Breast Cancer Conference.
The unique, second-annual conference was designed to provide education, empowerment and support for people living with metastatic disease and their families. The event offered attendees the opportunity to access and benefit from important information shared by experts in the metastatic breast cancer community about the latest in research, therapies and healthy living as well as to connect with others facing their own journey with cancer.
According to Susan G. Komen, the largest breast cancer organization in the U.S., metastatic breast cancer (MBC) is an advanced stage (stage 4) of breast cancer where tumor cells have spread to other parts of the body, such as the bones, liver, lungs or brain; most breast cancer deaths are a result of metastasis. In the 1970s, only 10% of women survived five years after a diagnosis of MBC. Today, because of research and the discovery of new and more effective treatments, this has more than doubled to an average of 25%. Susan G. Komen’s $210 million investments in over 500 research grants and more than 50 clinical trials focused on MBC are working to identify the genes and processes that cause breast cancer cells to metastasize; develop and test new therapies to both prevent and treat metastatic breast cancer; and discover new methods for predicting risk of metastasis or detecting metastasis early using urine or blood tests or body scans. The organization’s “Bold Goal” is to reduce the current number of breast cancer deaths in the U.S. by 50% by 2026.
RCCA: A Proud Sponsor
RCCA was a proud sponsor of the 2020 Komen New Jersey Virtual Metastatic Breast Cancer Conference and Dr. Shapira was among 16 elite health care providers, scientists, MBC survivors and others who presented at the prominent, six-hour event.
As chief medical officer at Regional Cancer Care Associates, Dr. Shapira oversees clinical operations, including quality of care and patient safety, coordination of clinical care, development of clinical information support systems, and physician engagement in strategic initiatives to provide value-based quality care. Her role also includes overseeing and expanding the research portfolio and implementation of innovative programs to advance quality improvement and new models of care for best practices in oncology. Prior to joining RCCA, Dr. Shapira held positions including chief of the Division of Hematology Oncology and director of Cancer Institute at State University New York (SUNY) Downstate Medical Center, and director of Cancer Genetics at Northwell Health System and associate professor of medicine at Hofstra University. She conducted her residency training in Internal Medicine at Saint Barnabas Medical Center in Livingston and a Hematology Oncology Fellowship at SUNY Downstate Medical Center.
Held virtually this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, 2020 Komen New Jersey Metastatic Breast Cancer Conference attendees had the opportunity to participate in live sessions with leading medical experts and people living with metastatic breast cancer, ask questions and receive real-time answers. Attendees could chat with fellow attendees in the event’s meet-up lounges and interact with exhibitors offering beneficial products, services and information.