Areas of Work

Our Catchment Area

The efforts of the Center for Cancer Equity and Engagement cover the entire Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Over fifty percent of all cancer patients throughout the state are treated within the DF/HCC partner institutions (Beth Isreal Lahey, Boston Children's Hospital, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Massachusetts General Hospital, and programs through the Harvard Schools of Medicine and Public Health.) To this end, we are dedicated to improving access to quality cancer care for patients and communities across the state, including:

  • Greater Boston Area
  • Central Massachusetts
  • Metro West 
  • North Shore
  • South Shore
  • Western Massachusetts

For information on how to get involved with our work (both for community members and researchers) visit the How to Get Involved page.

Massachusetts Cancer Data

As a state, Massachusetts continues to do well in reducing cancer mortality and incidence compared to the nation as a whole. Massachusetts has the 2nd largest decline in cancer mortality across the United States.

Despite these incredible strides, cancer disparities continue to persist in communities and neighborhoods across the state. Some of the most significant cancer disparities in Massachusetts include breast, prostate, cervical, and uterine cancers, liver cancer, stomach cancer, myeloma, and colorectal cancer. These disparities exist in numerous communities across MA, rural, urban, and significantly within communities of color.

One of the ways that the Center for Cancer Equity and Engagement seeks to monitor the burden of cancer in the state is through the Massachusetts Cancer Data Commons website. The MA  Cancer Data Commons is a web-based resource for researchers and community members to quickly access Massachusetts specific cancer data. Using the MA Cancer Data Commons, you can quickly access cancer data fact sheets specific to different cancers, cities geographic regions, populations, and more.

Visit the Massachusetts Cancer Data Commons website to learn more and access data and resources on cancer in Mass.

Access to Clinical Trials

The Center for Cancer Equity and Engagement is committed to improving access and accrual to clinical trials, specifically among underserved and minority communities in Massachusetts.

Our Clinical Trial Initiatives Include:

  • DF/HCC Clinical Trials Task Force
  • Cancer Care Equity Program
  • LasarX Foundation Work 
  • CHE Clinical Trials Education and Outreach
  • Clinical Trials Hub 

Outreach and Engagement

Current Projects and Initiatives

We are excited to collaborate with a number of community partners locally and across the state on initiatives to reduce cancer inequity both in prevention and care. Check out some of our current work below.

  • YMCA Youth Tobacco Program - An innovative youth peer-to-peer education project on tobacco and vaping prevention in collaboration with Roxbury YMCA.
  • Cancer Care Equity Program - A DFCI program for streamlined diagnosis, treatment, and education of underserved patients with suspected malignancy, in collaboration with Whittier Street Health Center, a community health primary care center located in Roxbury, Mass.
  • PRECISE Community Studio - A collaboration between the Center for Cancer Equity and Engagement and the Harvard Catalyst Program. This event brings together stakeholders from the clinical and community space to provide feedback, advice and support on a research study to asses risk-stratified prostate cancer screening. 

Community Health Education

The Center for Cancer Equity and Engagement is able to provide cancer education and outreach to community groups and organizations across the state via our Community Health Educator. As part of the National Cancer Institute's National Outreach Network, we provide tailored education on the topics of clinical trials and HPV vaccination. If your organization, community group, school or church is interested in having an educational forum on these topics, we are happy to support. Please contact Devan Carr to learn more.