The National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN)—a not-for-profit alliance of leading cancer centers in the United States—today announced the signing of a Memo of Understanding (MOU) with Vietnam National Cancer Hospital (“K Hospital”) and the Vietnam Cancer Association to work together to improve standards for cancer care throughout the country.
Five delegates from NCCN visited Hanoi May 24-26 to sign the MOU and pilot the creation of NCCN Harmonized Guidelines for Vietnam.
“We are honoured to collaborate with in-country experts to develop and validate Vietnamese harmonizations (and subsequent translations) of NCCN Guidelines,” said Robert W. Carlson, MD, Chief Executive Officer, NCCN. “We can improve outcomes and quality-of-life for patients with cancer throughout the country by standardizing practices and addressing language barriers.”
Professor Tran Van Thuan, Deputy Minister of Health of Vietnam, and Associate Professor Bui Dieu, President of the Vietnam Cancer Association, were special guests during the program.
"I believe the collaborations between K Hospital, the Vietnam Cancer Association, and NCCN are the first steps toward global best practices in cancer prevention, diagnosis, and treatment,” said Professor Tran Van Thuan.
“I anticipate there will be more opportunities to collaborate in order to routinely update these guidelines and participate in numerous activities to improve the treatment and research capabilities of Vietnamese doctors."
The NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology (NCCN Guidelines) are the recognized standard for clinical direction and policy in cancer care and the most thorough and frequently updated clinical practice guidelines available in any area of medicine.
NCCN currently has a library of more than 80 NCCN Guidelines, containing the latest evidence-based expert consensus recommendations for treating nearly every type of cancer, plus screening, prevention, and supportive care.
These free resources help guide care providers around the world with more than 13 million downloads per year; nearly half of registered users of the NCCN Guidelines report that they live outside the United States.
NCCN Harmonized Guidelines are based on the original versions of the NCCN Guidelines but also include colour-coded modifications of the algorithms to represent both the optimal care that low- and mid-resource countries aspire to provide and pragmatic approaches that provide effective treatment options for resource-constrained settings.
NCCN Harmonized Guidelines have already been published in collaboration with local experts in Sub-Saharan Africa and the Caribbean.
“We look forward to building off the highly-regarded NCCN Guidelines, taking into account our local circumstances, physiologic and risk differences, accessibility, regulations, and technology, to better serve people with cancer across Vietnam,” said Professor Le Van Quang, Director – Chairperson of K Hospital.
“By making the highest standards in evidence-based care more accessible, we can help all of our patients to live better lives.”
While in Hanoi, Gregory J. Riely, MD, PhD, Vice Chair, Clinical Research, Department of Medicine, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, and Member of the NCCN Guidelines Panel for Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, worked with local experts in Vietnam to create a pilot version of NCCN Harmonized Guidelines for Vietnam: Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer.
He was joined by Dr. Carlson; NCCN Chief Medical Officer Wui-Jin Koh, MD; Oncology Nurse Practitioner from Stanford Health Services, Kathleen Smith, RN, MS; and NCCN Senior Manager, Global Policy & Strategic Alliances, Katherine Winckworth-Prejsnar, MPH.
Next steps for this project include nine additional harmonizations to cover the top 10 highest-incidence cancer types for Vietnam.
The NCCN Harmonized Guidelines for these 10 cancer types will also be translated into Vietnamese by professionals with advanced degrees and experience in the medical field.
There are currently more than 250 translations of the NCCN Guidelines and clinical resources across 69 languages plus more than 50 NCCN Harmonized Guidelines. View these free resources and learn more about NCCN’s efforts to increase access to high-quality, high-value cancer care worldwide, by visiting NCCN.org/global.
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