UPenn's Abramson Cancer Center Becomes 28th Cancer Center to Join NCCN

The Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania will become the 28th member institution to join the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN), it was announced Tuesday.

The Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania (ACC) will become the 28th member institution to join the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN), it was announced Tuesday.

The ACC’s membership in NCCN will include the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Penn Presbyterian Medical Center, Pennsylvania Hospital, and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. The ACC also includes the Rena Rowan Breast Cancer Center and the Integrated Breast Center at Pennsylvania Hospital.

Clinicians and scientists from the ACC will join more than 1300 experts from current NCCN institutions to work together across 53 panels to review the latest innovations and approvals in cancer care, in order to update the NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology (NCCN Guidelines). ​​​There are currently 73 different NCCN Guidelines, which apply to 97% of cancers affecting patients in the United States, plus recommendations for related conditions like nausea, fatigue, distress, or immunotherapy-related toxicities.

Various studies, like this recent one presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology Quality Care Symposium in September, have shown that adhering to NCCN guidelines improves breast cancer outcomes. In addition, an update on NCCN breast cancer guidelines was presented earlier this year at the NCCN’s 23rd annual conference.

“The Abramson Cancer Center is a perfect fit and wonderful addition to the group of leading cancer centers that comprise NCCN,” said Robert W. Carlson, MD, NCCN’s chief executive officer. He noted that Penn is an immunotherapy pioneer and is innovative in its treatment approaches to stem cell transplantation, genetics, palliative care, and other areas.

In 2017, the guidelines were downloaded more than 8 million times in 2017, the NCCN said. The NCCN is devoted to improving and facilitating quality, effective, efficient, and accessible cancer care so patients can live better lives. NCCN was started by 13 founding member institutions in 1995, including Philadelphia-based Fox Chase Cancer Center, which also housed the nonprofit’s original headquarters.