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About THANC

Our Mission

We are committed to supporting research and education in the early detection and treatment of thyroid and head and neck cancer, to advancing new therapies, and to alleviating the suffering and functional impairment of patients who undergo treatment.

The Foundation

The Thyroid, Head and Neck Cancer (THANC) Foundation was incorporated in 2003 and quickly became the largest private funder of research in the United States for these types of cancer. In 2009 THANC became the first US member of the global Head and Neck Research Network (HNRN) and refocused research funding internally on collaborative initiatives as a member of this organization. In addition to research, THANC funded continuing professional medical education through sponsorship of the Multidisciplinary Management of Head and Neck Cancer and Thyroid and Parathyroid Diseases until 2011, when the 20th Annual Course was held. The Foundation supports the Head & Neck Oncologic and Microvascular Reconstructive Surgery, and Thyroid/Parathyroid Surgery Fellowship, a program accredited by the American Head and Neck Society. THANC’s resources also focus on community awareness and education as well as patient outreach and support initiatives. Under the medical direction of Dr. Mark Urken, THANC is housed within the Institute for Head and Neck and Thyroid Cancer at the Phillips Ambulatory Care Center at Mount Sinai Beth Israel Medical Center.

Research

The Thyroid, Head and Neck Research Center (THNRC) focuses on developing multidisciplinary protocols and treatments to improve outcomes in voice, speech, swallow function and quality of life for individuals undergoing treatment for head and neck cancer. Surgery with or without radiation and chemoradiotherapy can cause changes to oral competence, speech, voice, resonance, swallowing, diet, salivary flow, sensation, taste, and quality of life. Primary radio/chemoradiotherapy can affect these variables as well. The THANC Functional Outcomes Center has been examining the effects of surgery, radiotherapy and chemoradiotherapy on these variables over time to better predict function following treatment. The effects of various medical treatments, such as type of surgical reconstruction and organ sparing radiotherapy protocols are being examined, as are the effects of speech and swallow interventions.

Accomplishments

Major initiatives

Thyroid Care Collaborative

THANC has underwritten the establishment of the Thyroid Care Collaborative (TCC), a disease-specific electronic health record system accessible to patients and their physicians, regardless of institutional affiliation. As a highly comprehensive, HIPAA-compliant tool, the TCC strives to facilitate the provision of high-quality thyroid care and aims to revolutionize the way that the life-long surveillance of thyroid cancer patients is managed. http://www.thyroidccc.org/

Head and Neck Research Network

Establishment of HNRN

Head & Neck Cancer Guide

THANC developed the HNCG, a comprehensive resource to help patients and their loved ones understand and prepare for every step of the cancer journey. The Head & Neck Cancer Guide strives to provide information that is written by experts but easy to understand, for adults, teens and children, on diagnosis, treatments, emotional challenges, medical decision making and much more. http://www.headandneckcancerguide.org/

  • Major initiatives

    Thyroid Cancer Care Collaborative

    THANC has underwritten the establishment of the Thyroid Cancer Care Collaborative (TCCC), a disease-specific electronic health record system accessible to patients and their physicians, regardless of institutional affiliation. As a highly comprehensive, HIPAA-compliant tool, the TCCC strives to facilitate the provision of high-quality thyroid cancer care and aims to revolutionize the way that the life-long surveillance of thyroid cancer patients is managed. http://www.thyroidccc.org/

    Head and Neck Research Network

    Establishment of HNRN

    Head & Neck Cancer Guide

    THANC developed the HNCG, a comprehensive resource to help patients and their loved ones understand and prepare for every step of the cancer journey. The Head & Neck Cancer Guide strives to provide information that is written by experts but easy to understand, for adults, teens and children, on diagnosis, treatments, emotional challenges, medical decision making and much more. http://www.headandneckcancerguide.org/

  • Research

    Members of the THANC Foundation publish numerous peer-reviewed scientific papers every year, and present their work at national and international meetings, including AACE, AHNS, ATA, WCTC, IFHNOS.

  • Education

    The Fellowship in Head and Neck Oncologic and Microvascular Reconstructive Surgery and Thyroid/Parathyroid Surgery is accredited by the American Head & Neck Society. The American Head and Neck Society is the single largest organization in North America for the advancement of research and education in head and neck oncology.

    Multidisciplinary Course

    For 11 years, THANC has underwritten the courses on Free Flap Reconstruction of Head and Neck Defects & Controversies in the Management of Thyroid and Parathyroid Diseases to which hundreds of physicians and surgeons have attended to learn the most concurrent strategies to deal with head & neck cancer and thyroid/parathyroid diseases.

    RA program

    Working alongside physicians and PhDs, Research Associates run clinical studies, coordinate projects, and write manuscripts for publication. They also spend one day per week in the operating room with Dr. Urken observing head and neck surgical cases in order to understand the surgical procedures and the course of treatment. Additionally, Research Associates will collect data in the operating room to advance ongoing research initiatives and they have the opportunity to attend multidisciplinary head and neck tumor board meetings and interact with clinicians of various specialties involved in the care of head and neck cancer patients.

  • Fundraising

    Annual fundraising, golf: nearly $5 million dollars over the last decade to fund of research and patient support initiatives.

  • Past

    • 11 years of excellence
    • Created a new laboratory to investigate novel strategies for killing cancer cells with oncolytic viruses which are designed to kill head and neck cancer cells but not effect normal, healthy cells.
    • Established the Mount Sinai Department of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Cancer Laboratory, a working tissue culture and molecular biology laboratory.
    • Preliminary studies funded by the Foundation have created exciting new avenues of investigation and novel findings in cancers of the head and neck and thyroid.
    • Launched a clinical research program in thyroid cancer. Which evaluated the psychosocial impact of early educational programs that are provided to patients and their families immediately following the diagnosis of these cancers.
The THANC Foundation – One Sheet

Contact Us

Feel free to find out more about the Foundation or thyroid and head and neck cancer. Submit your inquiries to info@thancfoundation.org.

Please submit only general questions. You should address questions about specific medical needs to your doctor.

You may direct any design or press-related inquiries to design@thancfoundation.org.

Learn more at:

Head and Neck Cancer Guide

One of the THANC Foundation’s latest initatives, the Head & Neck Cancer Guide is a comprehensive resource to help you and your loved ones understand and prepare for every step of the cancer journey.

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