Cancer registrars keep up awareness

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LEWISTON – More than 4,000 cancer registrars, their colleagues and community leaders will commemorate National Cancer Registrars Week on April 3 through 7. The theme, “Cancer Registrars … Advocates in Action,” was chosen by a volunteer committee to portray the growing impact cancer registrars make in the nation’s response to public health challenges.

The Tumor Registry was established at St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center on Jan. 1, 1960. One of the goals of the registry that week is to increase the awareness of the facility in Lewiston/Auburn and throughout the state.

There are 38 registries in Maine that collect and report data to the Maine Cancer Registry, who in turn reports to the National Cancer Data Base. They play a role in quality of care for patients and the hospital’s response in fighting cancer.

The Tumor Registry promotes education through special speaker presentations, providing physicians with current statistics and giving the oncology team a forum for case consultation.

In the rapidly evolving fields of cancer research and treatment, cancer registrars are required to stay on top of the latest information on new treatment protocols and ongoing clinical studies.

Registrars use a mentoring network and formal continuing education programs to remain up-to-date. Cancer registry degree programs are also available throughout the country. Further, cancer registrars receive training in ethics and medical records privacy.

For more information, contact the Tumor Registry at St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center at 777-8518.

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