Growing up we had so many different healthcare heroes in our lives because of my brother. We had different doctors, nurses, respiratory therapists, physical therapists, and case workers, just to name a few. These were the people that, whether we got along with them or not, they took care of my brother. Some of these people that came to care for my brother touched our lives in a different way: they became our family. I looked up to these people so much my entire life, I watched them leave their own families and come into our home to care for the person that we loved most, to not see limits in him, to think outside the box to give him the best quality of life, and to truly love him like he was their own child. I knew growing up that I wanted to be a nurse and I wanted to go into others’ homes and care for their loved ones the same way that so many cared for my brother. These kids deserved to be seen with no limits, to still be kids, and I wanted to touch their lives the same way so many healthcare heroes touched mine.
Many people have healthcare workers in their lives, whether they are taking care of them personally or someone that they love. Healthcare workers are changing people’s lives in so many different situations and circumstances. It can be anyone from a primary care physician to an ER physician caring for your little one’s broken arm, or even a doctor providing care for you or your loved one with cancer. Cancer is in so many different people’s lives. Cancer is a word most people don’t like to hear and are afraid of, and I don’t blame them. While going through cancer or watching someone you love go through it is never easy…the people that are there along the way can make things a tiny bit brighter. That is why I am so passionate about AstraZeneca’s amazing program called the Cancer Community Awards (C2 Awards). They are recognizing the unsung heroes in the cancer community for the amazing work they do, the lives that they change, the people they touch, and the amazing advances made in the cancer world. These are the people who bring together patients, caregivers, advocacy teams and so much more. They are recognizing the people who care for your loved ones and make a massive difference in your family’s life. I can’t wait to share more with you about this amazing program and this year’s C2 Catalyst for Precision Medicine winner who has made such a difference in advancing precision medicine for the cancer community, and changed so many families’ lives!
I had the amazing opportunity to interview Dr Nadauld, the winner for the Cancer Community Awards in the category of Catalyst for Precision Medicine. It was so amazing to hear someone in my own community won the award. I loved learning about Dr Nadauld, how he met his amazing wife, about their 5 kids, and all of the things they like to do as a family. Dr Nadauld is from Utah, attended the University of Utah and then attended Stanford for a fellowship in cancer research. When Dr Nadauld was on staff at Stanford in their cancer department, he knew he wanted to be able to help more people and be more efficient in helping cancer patients with precision medicine. He found that precision medicine increased cancer patient’s survival rate by nearly double and cost less than traditional treatment. He started working for Intermountain Health Care in St. George, Utah and has a clinic there where cancer patients can get all of their care in one place which is truly amazing. No more scheduling with a million different offices, driving to different offices/clinics for each procedure, lab work, etc. They can get all of their care in one building by just walking down the hall.
What is precision medicine in cancer care? Precision medicine is the mapping of genomes of the cancer patient to optimize their treatment. By mapping the genomes, the patient is then given a specific treatment for the cancer that they have, based on their DNA.
Dr Nadauld is working on an amazing initiative in Utah to map the DNA of over 500,000 people over the next five years. When I spoke with Dr Nadauld, he said, “This is the largest effort of its kind from a single population and will have more data in one location than anywhere in all of Europe.” This is going to truly change the way that patients are taken care of because they will know what conditions or diseases they are predisposed to, even if they are not showing symptoms. This is amazing and turns the care into more preventative care rather than reactive care.
Family, something that you hold so close, something that you don’t wish away and are the people that you turn to no matter what. Family doesn’t have to be blood-related, it can be people who mean the world to you, are always there, and you connect with on a deep level, and so many healthcare heroes became a part of my family. That is why I am so passionate about sharing Dr Nadauld’s story. Dr Nadauld is touching the lives of so many people and changing their lives and their families, and I am honored to be able to share his story with you.