American Samoa Community Cancer Network
The specific goals of this project, entitled American Samoan Community Cancer Network (ASCC Network), are to reduce cancer incidence and mortality among Samoans in the U.S. Territory of American Samoa through the establishment of a sustainable infrastructure to: (1) promote cancer awareness within American Samoan communities; and (2) initiate a cancer research and training program to develop indigenous Samoan researchers. The target population will be Samoans who live in the U.S. Territory of American Samoa. ASCC Network is a collaborative of 3 agencies: (1) Lyndon Baines Johnson (LBJ) Tropical Medical Center; (2) American Samoa Community College (ASCC); and (3) American Samoa Department of Health (DOH). LBJ is the applicant and lead agency and will house the central ASCC Network office. ASCC will head the research and training components and provide staff and facilities for related activities. The DOH will utilize its leadership in public health to expand cancer education in American Samoa. This triad represents a landmark partnership for cancer education, cancer prevention and control, and community-based research for Samoans, by Samoans. It provides the focus and forum to address the disproportionate cancer burden on American Samoans and the need for self-determination and control of our own health. Through collaborative partnerships, ASCC Network will provide support systems and expertise to achieve to: (1) establish the ASCC Network infrastructure with partnering agencies; (2) foster and facilitate cancer education programs to increase cancer awareness; (3) create programs and opportunities to develop Samoan researchers; (4) increase the number of research grants addressing cancer in American Samoa; and (5) establish a culturally appropriate process to support scientifically rigorous research that is respectful of American Samoan cultural beliefs, practices, and customs. As a result of these programs, we want to realize a downward trend in cancer incidence and mortality in American Samoans over the next decade.