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Survey seeks input from cancer patients, survivors

DES MOINES — Cancer patients and cancer survivors in Iowa are being asked to take a survey about their experiences in hopes of improving the difficult process for everyone.

Jackie Cale, the Iowa grassroots manager of the American Cancer Society’s Cancer Action Network, says the “Survivor Views” survey should only take ten minutes to fill out online and it can be a tremendous outlet.

“Some of the questions vary, like have they had access to clinical trials? Have they ever felt that there was a barrier to their cancer care?” Cale says. “We go into some of the demographics, where do they live, race, ethnicity. We’re just trying to get an overall view.”

An estimated 20,000 Iowans will be diagnosed with cancer this year. To take part in the survey, organizers are looking for Iowa survivors who have been diagnosed or received treatment for their cancer within the last seven years. Information taken from the confidential surveys will be used in meetings with Iowa legislators and other policymakers.

“This round of survey is very focused on health equity, what that looks like in your community,” Cale says. “We really want to focus on the fact that where you live and your race and ethnicity, those really shouldn’t play a factor in your cancer care.”

The survey project was launched in 2019 and Cale says it’s provided invaluable insight on issues including the cost of prescription drugs, access to health coverage, surprise medical bills and the effect of the pandemic on access to cancer care.

To take part, go to: www.fightcancer.org/SurvivorViews45

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