I [recently] received a press release from a friend in the Bay Area. Investigators at UCSF have published a study in the New England Journal of Medicine showing that less chemotherapy can be effective at treating some childhood cancers.
The paper was the result of an eight-year clinical study in children with neuroblastoma. In this particular population, researchers were able to reduce chemotherapy exposure by 40 percent while maintaining a 90 percent survival rate. You can read about it here.
The press release sparked a brief email exchange between me and my friend: Who might be interested in writing about this study and is there any way to get it to spread? What would make it sticky in the eyes of the public?
Here are a few ideas:
Figure out who cares. Sure it’s niche news, but there are people who would think this is pretty darn important. Think organizations centered on parents of children with cancer, adult survivors of childhood cancer, pediatric hematology-oncology physicians, pediatricians and allied professionals in pediatric medicine like nurse practitioners and hematology-oncology nurses. Networks form around these groups. Find them and seed them.
Make a video. Offer powerful, visual content beyond a press release. A four-minute clip with the principal investigator, Dr. Matthay, would be simple and offer dimension to what is now something restricted to print. The Mayo Clinic has done this really well. Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at 33 Charts*