Message from the President
Colleen A.F. Lawton, MD, FASTRO
How will the practice of radiation oncology change over the next 10 or 20 years? No one knows exactly what the future will hold, but we as a specialty can take action to continually advance the care we provide and ensure that more patients with cancer have access to this life-saving treatment. To this end, the Radiation Oncology Institute is funding research that will heighten the critical role of radiation therapy in the treatment of cancer. When you give to the ROI, you are investing in the future of our profession by supporting some of the best and brightest investigators who are seeking solutions for some of radiation oncology’s most pressing challenges. Together we have funded $3.7 million in research to help radiation oncology be a leader in the movement toward more patient-centered, quality cancer care.
The ROI is your research foundation, created by ASTRO in 2006 to support research that meets the current needs of the field and fills the persistent gaps in research funding for radiation oncology. Every year, the ROI issues a call for proposals on a timely and important topic for research that will improve outcomes for your patients. In 2021, we awarded four grants to support investigators exploring biomarkers for radiation oncology. The four grants awarded in 2020 focused on improving diversity and inclusion in radiation oncology to address disparities in patient care and to develop a more diverse radiation oncology workforce. We are looking forward to announcing new grants on the exciting and rapidly expanding area of research using artificial intelligence to enhance radiation oncology in 2022.
Your investment in research is paying off as ROI investigators are achieving success. They are publishing results in top journals such as the International Journal of Radiation Oncology • Biology • Physics and JAMA Oncology, are making resources like the “Communicating the External Beam Radiotherapy Experience” (CEBRE) series of discussion guides available for free to all practices and have secured more than $5 million in follow-on funding directly related to their ROI-supported research. Most importantly, they are enhancing care and improving quality of life for patients with cancer.
We are grateful to all of you who have made this progress possible. Your continued investment is essential to ensuring the continued success and growth of our practice-changing research and educational programs.
I invite you to explore the website to learn more about the outcomes of ROI research and meet the talented investigators you are supporting. Thank you for investing in the future of radiation oncology!