"I believe that what we become depends on what our fathers teach us at odd moments, when they aren’t trying to teach us. We are formed by little scraps of wisdom" - Umberto Eco
I lost my father to cancer. He was only 52 years old, healthy, a loving husband and father. The strong silent type, he was a provider and community figure who had an encouraging word and helping hand for everyone. An avatar of integrity in words and actions, he taught me conscience and empathy.
His cancer was one of the 'bad ones', an aggressive unknown primary with limited treatment options. I was a young professional working at a top cancer center, from which he quickly received care. His doctor was not only clinically excellent but very skilled in communications and the doctor/patient relationship. We couldn’t have been in better hands, but unfortunately for his rare cancer, death was inevitable. He died a few months after diagnosis. We were devastated.
That was 20 years ago and I still carry his memory with me as a daughter and cancer professional. I feel a sense of duty and pride to contribute to work that is purpose driven and patient-centric and am happy to have found this with M2GEN, a company accelerating cancer research and offering hope to patients like my father. I like to think my father is proud too.
Amy Sherman, MA, MSW, BSW joined M2GEN as the Patient Engagement Director in 2018. Amy returned to the U.S. after spending 10 years working in England with Macmillan Cancer Support developing regional multidisciplinary services to improve patient information and support, and the National Health Service (NHS), developing national and local strategic patient experience programs and utilizing patients as experts to improve service design, quality of care, and outcomes. Amy works very closely with the ORIEN Patient Advisory Council and ORIEN members to develop and implement patient engagement initiatives for Total Cancer Care and Avatar, including development of patient education and communication materials.