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Volume 1, Number 2 ----- Fall/Winter 1998

Around Town -- Hawaii and Georgetown


Imagine earning frequent flyer miles during your annual trip to the PLCO screening center. For many PLCO participants at the Hawaii screening center at the Pacific Health Research Institute in Honolulu, this is not an absurdity -- it is reality. The state of Hawaii is divided among many islands. Of the one million state residents, 800,000 live in Honolulu on the island of Oahu. PLCO participants who live on other islands must fly to Honolulu for their clinic visits.


Helen Petrovitch, M.D., co-principal investigator, notes that in addition to its geography, the Hawaii PLCO screening center differs from mainland screening centers in the ethnicity of its participants. "Hawaii adds a strong Asian component to thee PLCO study. Many Hawaii residents are of Japanese, Phillipino, Chinese, Indonesian, or Thai descent."


"Mahalo (thank you)," adds Lance Yokochi, M.D., principal investigator. "We really appreciate the dedication of all of our participants, especially people in our usual care group. The usual care group is equally as important as the screening arm. The study is designed to compare the benefits and disadvantages of screening. Without the full participation of the usual care group, we wouldn't be able to compare results and improve cancer prevention."


PLCO-Hawaii Staff

Front row (left to right): Elsie Batangan; Kim Stryker, R.N.; Barbara Ideta, R.N.; Arlene McCafferty. Back row (left to right): Helene Hodges; Shelle Chasnoff, R.N.; Peggy Rowan, R.N.; Karen Taylor, Louisa Turner. Not pictured: Rebecca Troyer; Nika Hickey; Ted Tokumine, R.N.; and Lori Lucente.




When asked about their interests in the PLCO trial, staff at the Georgetown University PLCO screening center identified three different aspects: education, human connections, and research. "I value the opportunity to educate the public about cancer prevention and detection," explains coordinator Colleen McGuire, M.S.N. Recruiter Katie Bennett especially enjoys "working and talking with all of the participants." Edward Gelmann, M.D., principal investigator, is interested in learning more about cancer risk factors. "PLCO is a tremendous resource. Because of the size of the study, we will be able to examine many risk factors and gain vast new knowledge."

Georgetown University is located in Washington, DC. Ms. Bennett explains that this location provides unique challenges for a long-term clinical trial. "Washington is a transient city -- many people live here only a few years. This makes it hard for some people to make a long-term commitment to enroll in PLCO."

"Please tell your friends and family members to consider joining the trial. Word-of-mouth is the best way to bring people into the trial," Ms. Bennett explains. Ms. McGuire urges participants to stay involved in the study. "Without your continued involvement, we can't learn more about cancer prevention."


Georgetown University Staff

(Left to right): Connie Elbon-Copp; Colleen McGuire, R.N., M.S.N.; Tanja Williams; Katie Bennett; Carol Klotz; Edward Gelmann, M.D.; Assunta Ritieni; Jerry Tadeo. Not pictured: Polly Ke, R.N.; and Cyndy Doswell.



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