Increasingly, treatment for patients with cancer is being determined by public and private payors and regulatory bodies. This shift in decision making which has inevitably impacted the clinician's influence over the care of their patients, has also raised an important question regarding who should be deciding "optimal" care for patients with cancer. To impact these policy decisions that have broad implications for clinical practice, it is clear that the voice of patients, clinicians, and other expert stakeholders is critical to ensuring that patients' needs are being addressed.
On Tuesday, November 29, 2011, NCCN convened the NCCN Patient Advocacy Summit: Ensuring Optimal Care for Patients at the National Press Club in Washington, DC. This invitation-only Summit was attended by patient advocates, providers, employers, and industry representatives within the oncology community. These key stakeholders gathered for a day-long session to discuss the current issues that most profoundly affect patient care. The Summit featured a series of panel discussions including representatives from each sector in attendance. A summary of the Summit is now available for those who could not attend.