American Cancer Society (ACS) is a non-profit organization focused on cancer eradication. ACS was established in 1913 by ten physicians and five businesspeople in New York that initially was called the American Society for the Control of Cancer (ASCC) (American Cancer Society, 2019). This organization was formed at a time when cancer was stigmatized. The main objective of ACS founders was to increase cancer awareness among people to unite efforts in understanding and curing cancer (American Cancer Society, 2019). During its one-hundred-year history, this organization has been able to contribute to cancer research and treatment significantly. ACS helped to prove an association between smoking and cancer, improve juvenile leukemia treatment, and develop several anti-cancer drugs (American Cancer Society, 2019). Approximately $5 billion were invested in cancer research since its renaming from ASCC to ACS in 1945 (American Cancer Society, 2019). However, the costs of cancer treatment are still high in the U.S. Although ACS managed to reduce co-payments for cancer treatment, the organization should collaborate with the U.S. government to develop a unique program that will provide free treatment to all cancer patients.
Oncologic treatment is still expensive and unaffordable to many patients nowadays. American Cancer Society has collaborated with various non-profit organizations to reduce co-payments and co-insurance costs for cancer patients (Sharpe et al., 2016). However, many cancer patients with and without insurance cannot receive adequate treatment without significant investments. The existing insurance programs provide partial coverage for cancer treatment, while uninsured patients have to pay in advance. The costs of chemotherapy and oncologic surgeries are high; thus, cancer treatment remains unaffordable for the general population (Sharpe et al., 2016). This situation demonstrates the inadequacies of the U.S. healthcare system; however, it is in the ACS’s power to change this unfavorable situation and propose government coverage of cancer treatment for all patients. The major players in this issue are ACS and the U.S. government which failed to consider free cancer treatment. Therefore, ACS needs an O.D. consultant to develop a unique program to convince the United States government to provide free treatment for all cancer patients.
American Cancer Society built a strong team that significantly improved cancer awareness and research investments. In particular, the five officers, John Alfonso, Carmen E. Guerra, Brian A. Marlow, and Jeffrey L. Kean, have been working hard on organizational development in different directions (American Cancer Society, 2019). Each of them worked to create an extensive collaborative network with other non-profit and private institutions to bring funding to oncologic research and treatment cost relief. However, they should consider changing their focus to cooperation with the government on developing a cancer insurance program that will provide full treatment coverage for patients in need.
Successful implementation of this plan requires a clear role demarcation and a strict timeline for each task. The first step in implementing this plan is building a team that will develop an insurance modification program. The team will need to consist of ACS research and finance experts and government members with a deep understanding of U.S. healthcare. The second step is re-engineering the team from simple collaboration to a united team with a common goal. Third, the development of the program should be completed within 12 months. Finally, the efficacy of chosen approach should be evaluated by the ACS members using a survey with open-ended and closed questions.
Overall, the American Cancer Society made a significant contribution to increasing cancer awareness, improving oncologic research, and reducing costs for patients. However, the recommendation for ACS is to shift its focus from minor cost amendments to a universal program of making cancer treatment free in the United States. Developing this program will require close collaboration with the government. Building an effective team and establishing strict deadlines can ensure the development of a program that may provide a better future for cancer patients.
American Cancer Society. (2019). Our history. Web.
Sharpe, K., Shaw, B., & Battaglia Seiler, M. (2016). Practical solutions when facing cost sharing: the American Cancer Society’s Health Insurance Assistance Service. The American Journal of Managed Care, 22(4 Suppl), s92–s94. Web.