JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Sunday is National Cancer Survivors Day.
While roughly 2 million people in the United States will be diagnosed with cancer this year, survivorship is steadily climbing in numbers.
Dr. Erin Mobley was diagnosed with a rare type of sarcoma in her bladder when she was 6 years old.
“I was treated here in Jacksonville at Nemours and Wolfson,” Mobley said.
Now as a researcher in the field of health services, National Cancer Survivors Days is important to her.
Her research with UF Health focuses on people like herself and other survivors.
The death rate for men and women combined fell by 32% from its peak in 1991 to 2019, according to the American Cancer Society.
Although those numbers can be encouraging, Mobley said we can do better.
The Precision Cancer Survivorship Cohort study aims to recruit cancer survivors of all ages with any cancer diagnosis. From there, they’ll study differences in how people age and access care.
Mobley said information taken from this study could lead the way for more patients to become survivors.
“We want to take the broad approach to cancer survivorship and make it more personalized. We’ve understood the cancer experience is not the same for everyone,” she said.
For example, she said people who’ve been diagnosed with cancer could be predisposed to other ailments.
“Things like heart disease, or problems with their lungs, or their kidneys. Or even a second cancer as a result of their cancer diagnosis and treatment. That’s why it’s important that we make sure cancer survivors have access to the healthcare that they need,” Mobley said.