This year we celebrate 10 years of Pediatric Psycho-Oncology (SIOP-PPO). It was only in January 2007 that the SIOP Scientific Board approved the establishment of a committee dedicated to Pediatric Psycho-Oncology: SIOP PPO, an area of research which had not previously been represented. The Board gave us the opportunity to demonstrate over three conferences (2008-2010-2012) what Psycho-Oncology has to offer for all disciplines in SIOP. After Berlin, Boston and London we were told we could continue with the Educational Day, and have organized meetings which have been attended by many colleagues in the field and have been very much appreciated by psycho-oncology scholars and clinicians ever since.
With the PPO Educational Day meeting, free paper sessions, posters and symposia we have achieved:
- Facilitation of the international exchange of research data on pediatric psycho-oncology issues,
- Support for the integration of these data into current psychological research, theory, and practice,
- Encouragment of the rapid incorporation of this psychological knowledge into clinical pediatric oncology practice worldwide.
Last years meeting the SIOP and IPOS (International Psycho-Oncology Society were scheduled during the same period. We achieved that both meetings could be attended. We are now also working on developing closer collaboration to enhance pediatric psycho-oncology in both groups. A Memorandum of Understanding is under discussion to facilitate closer future ties between the two groups with similar missions.
This year’s meeting in Washington will be special with interesting Psycho-Oncology topics on both the Educational Day as well as in the main program. The Educational Day sessions will include the following speakers:
- Survivorship: Julia Rowland (What have we learned about Survivorship, Where do we go from here?) and Gisela Michel (Late outcomes in Parents of Children with Cancer).
- PROs: Bryce Reeve (Measurement tools and their use in clinical practice), Mary Jo Kupst (PROMIS and NIH-toolbox resources for use in psycho-oncology research) and Kirsten Bingen (PROS in clinical practice with children with cancer).
- Implementation of the Standards with the Goal of Improving Psychosocial Care of Children with Cancer and their Family Members: Anne Kazak, Lori Wiener, Vicky and Peter Brown (Mattie Miracle Cancer Foundation), and Andrea Patenaude.
- Utilizing technology to improve the emotional and behavioral care of children with cancer: Claire Wakefield (A Day in the Life of Our Clinical Group), Lisa Schwarz (AYA mobile health for survivors), and Maria McCarthy (Experiences with ACT online for parents).
We are especially delighted that Dr Jimmie Holland, the founder of the field of Psycho-Oncology, will be leading a masterclass on Friday morning during the main conference. She will present on changes in psycho-oncology practice over the years and reflect on clinical cases presented. Jimmie Holland, is a memorable person. She has (had) several important positions but most of all she has pioneered the development of interventions to reduce distress in cancer patients and their families, has developed training programs in psycho-oncology which have worldwide use, and has trained many of the leading figures in psycho-oncology over the past 40 years. We invite you all to attend this session which is unique.
We are hoping to encourage even greater attendance at our meetings and to increase the number of multidisciplinary topics on the program. Topics in related areas (such as ethics, fatigue or participation in research) are encouraged as well as interdisciplinary work to be submitted to the SIOP.
We look forward to seeing you all in Washington.
On behalf of the SIOP-PPO committee