On Wednesday, a bright national spotlight shined on VCU thanks to First Lady Dr. Jill Biden’s visit to VCU Massey Cancer Center. We were honored by her tour of our facilities and leadership of a discussion about ending cancer disparities.
“This has been amazing: what I’ve seen of the research here, what’s going on with cancer and how you’re trying to really address the health disparities in this country,” she said. “It’s about time that we really started getting serious about this.”
We were grateful for the opportunity to share the incredible research, patient care and community engagement efforts we undertake every day to end cancer disparities. The National Cancer Institute at the National Institutes of Health defines cancer disparities as differences between certain groups in the rates of new cases and deaths, prevalence, survival, quality of life after treatment and other outcomes related to cancer.
It’s a tribute to all of our expert, dedicated and compassionate health care and research team members that Dr. Biden chose to visit our campus. I am especially grateful for the work of my colleague Dr. Rob Winn, director of the VCU Massey Cancer Center.
Through initiatives including the Faith and Facts Friday series, Dr. Winn is helping build relationships among practitioners and community leaders across Central Virginia. A better, more equitable future in health care is possible. Please learn more about him and the other extraordinary researchers Dr. Biden met.
While Dr. Biden rightly praised our researchers and health care professionals, I was especially pleased when she said that she was “grateful for the work [Massey does] for the art of medicine as well. Building trust and relationships. Empowering communities to bring their own talents to this fight.”
This was a reminder of our mission to create transformational educational and health care opportunities for all people by improving access, affordability and timely outcomes.
Thank you, Dr. Biden, for your support and inspiration. And thank you to our students, faculty, staff, and health care and research team members whose work continues to make Massey a national leader in cancer care, research and community engagement.