Local doctors part of a new clinical trial that aims to improve cancer treatment

24 Jan

In the coming months, local cancer patients (who choose) may participate in a national clinical trial in Idaho Falls. One doctor who is spearheading the project tells us what this trial aims to do.

Taproot Health CEO Dan Dickson says, “Anything that is less than a cure for every cancer patient is not an appropriate goal.”

Dr. Dane Dickson is working to improve cancer treatment by developing a new clinical trial called “The Master Registry of Oncology Outcomes Associated to Testing and Treatment.”

Dickson says, “That is the vehicle that allows us to ask patients if they’re willing to share information. It helps physicians to be able to focus their efforts and report things in a standardized fashion.”

That shared information will be placed in a national database so doctors can follow treatments plans that best fit their patients’ needs. Doctors will be able to use the database to see what treatments worked best with different types of cancers and tumors that their own patients may be fighting.

So far, five institutions plan on participating in the new trial.

Dickson says, “The University of California at San Diego, or Thomas Jefferson in Philadelphia, or Oregon Health and Science University. These are three big cancer institutes. They came to the table, and then we came to the table with Utah Cancer Specialists.”

The fifth participating organization is Teton Cancer Institute in Idaho Falls.

Teton Cancer Institute Oncology Services Manager Lisa Anderson says, “Even in my generation you used to just assume that the end of cancer would be death. But actually in our world, we do see some success cases, and quite a few of those. And so, any step forward to that, it just excites us more and more.”

More cancer success cases is one goal of this new clinical trial that could last decades.

Dickson says, “People can go back and say, ‘What did we know five years ago? Now, what do we know today? How do we build on what we knew before?’ That’s part of the power of what we’re doing here.”

The clinical trial will only share cancer treatment information of patients who volunteer to be part of the study.

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