NCCN Guidelines for Patients® | Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer - page 3

NCCN Guidelines for Patients
: Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer
Version 1.2014
Turning Tragedy into Action
Deborah Morosini, MD, is a third-generation physician,
a pathologist, and an oncology researcher, but until her
sister, Dana Reeve, was diagnosed with lung cancer, she
didn’t fully comprehend how hard it can be for patients to
find good information about their treatment options.
“There is a tremendous ignorance of lung cancer and
about its treatments. Even I, as a physician, who works
in research every day was unaware—until I had to face
Dana’s tragedy.”
Dana Reeve had it all. She was a beautiful woman, an
actress, who married “Superman,” actor Christopher
Reeve. They had a son, Will. Then, in 1995, Reeve
suffered a catastrophic injury in a riding accident and
was paralyzed from the neck down. Dana cared for
him for almost 10 years, becoming a tireless crusader
for research on paralysis and stem cells. Reeve died
in October 2004, but Dana continued to press forward
with her foundation and with raising her son, by then an
adolescent. Then, just a few months later, this vibrant,
healthy, non-smoking young woman was diagnosed with
stage IV lung cancer. She lived for seven months.
Shortly after Dana’s death, Morosini began working with
lung cancer advocacy groups to raise awareness of the
needs of lung cancer patients. “My first thought when
I was asked to speak about Dana’s experience, was
‘why do you need me?’ But then, I began to realize that
the overall understanding of lung
cancer is really naive. People just
don’t understand the breadth and
scope of the problem.”
In 2009, Sam Donaldson asked
Morosini to join the Roundtable
discussion that opens the NCCN
Annual Conference each year.
Her first acquaintance with
NCCN, as she says, “struck a
strong chord.”
When Donaldson, as Chair of the
newly formed NCCN Foundation Board, asked her
to join, she accepted. In September 2010, she agreed to
have the NCCN Guidelines for Patients
: Non-Small Cell
Lung Cancer named in honor and memory of her sister.
“NCCN has played a critical role in translating really
complicated information into a high-quality resource.
I have used the clinical guidelines on many occasions.
There is a tremendous need for these new patient-
friendly guidelines. The more this kind of information
gets into the hands of patients, the more they will feed
it back to their doctors and make informed decisions for
themselves. These guidelines are extremely powerful.”
Dana Reeve,
sister of Deborah Morosini
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