BOSTON--"Our members must stand up as champions of special
training in surgical oncology," Society of Surgical Oncology
(SSO) president Bernard Gardner, MD, said at the Society's Annual
Cancer Symposium. "We must continue to nourish this society
because we provide something unique."
Dr. Gardner is professor of surgery and director of surgical education
at the New Jersey Medical School, Newark.
In an inspirational speech, Dr. Gardner strongly advocated special
training programs in surgical oncology. Experienced surgeons specifically
trained to manage cancer-related problems will lead to an improvement
in cancer care, he believes. He also called for an increased level
of funding for surgical oncology research as part of training
programs. "We must continue to search for new ways to treat
cancer," he said.
Dr. Gardner urged surgical oncologists to avoid being intimidated
by the government's efforts to modify aggressive approaches to
the treatment of cancer, and not to allow the government to prevent
the early referral of patients with cancer.
The government's attitude does not reflect the complexity of surgical
operations for cancer, he argued. He also admonished societal
attitudes of passivity toward the treatment of cancer, especially
in the elderly.