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Comprehensive Cancer Care Conference
Mimi Dow traveled to Washington, D.C. to attend this conference in mid April. The conference, started by James S. Gordon, M.D., Director of the Center for Mind-Body Medicine in Colorado, is dedicated to integrating Complementary and Alternative (CAM) therapies with standard medical treatment for cancer patients. Seven hundred physicians, nurses, social workers, dietitians, cancer survivors, oncologists and oncology professionals attended the conference, many of whom gave papers and described their work. Mimi was inspired to be surrounded by so many like-minded people. WomenStories videos and resource guides were on the literature table and disappeared quickly. Mimi, like the Ancient Mariner “who stoppeth one of three” described our video series to whomever she met, and she came home with a fistful of cards from people all across the country and requests to call or e-mail.

A highlight of the conference was a plenary session featuring a panel of survivors who told their stories. Three of these speakers were breast cancer survivors. One of the two physicians in this group, Betsy MCGregor, mentioned the impact of stories in her own recovery. This was, of course, music to Mimi’s ears. There were breakout sessions of all kinds, from The Effects of Therapeutic Massage and Healing Touch, to Herbal and Nutritional Interventions, to Funding Opportunities from National Cancer Institute and other private funders. National Institute of Health not only offers funding for CAM therapies, but has an office of Cancer Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Mimi is encouraged to know that CAM therapies have become so mainstream because WomenStories is clearly a complementary therapy for breast cancer patients.