National Conference Focuses on Cancer and Health Disparities in Native Americans

Pictured: Photo courtesy of the Seneca Nation of Indians Official Newsletter.

Compared with other groups in the U.S., American Indians and Alaskan Natives are experiencing a rise in health disparities — differences in the impact that cancer and other diseases have on their communities. To help find ways of reversing that trend, Roswell Park and the Mayo Clinic will cosponsor the 2017 Spirit of EAGLES National Conference, “Changing Patterns of Cancer in Native Communities: Strength Through Tradition and Science.” The event will be held Sept. 21-24, 2017, at the Niagara Falls Conference & Events Center, with pre-conference activities at the Seneca Niagara Casino & Hotel, both in Niagara Falls, NY.

Presentations will focus on such topics as the impact of repealing the Affordable Care Act; traditional medicine; precision medicine; palliative care; survivorship; and other issues. The conference will also include an off-site lacrosse game and an Iroquois dance demonstration followed by an Iroquois social.

“Spirit of EAGLES is a blend of traditional perspectives, culture and science, built from the idea that we can do the most good by listening to one another,” says Rodney Haring, PhD, MSW, Office of Community Outreach and Engagement at Roswell Park. “We get all these partners together in the same room, and there’s an incredible energy of healing and learning that I’ve never experienced in any other event or environment.”

A presenter and co-director of the conference, Dr. Haring is a member of the Seneca Nation of Indians, a National Congress of American Indians scholar, past fellow of the Spirit of EAGLES program at the Mayo Clinic, and a current advisor to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Minority Health, American Indian/Alaskan Native Health Research Advisory Council.

Funded by tribal, federal, and foundation partners, Spirit of EAGLES promotes and supports cancer research related to American Indians and Alaskan Natives, and works to increase cancer education in those communities.

The program is open to everyone. You may register for one day or the entire conference; fees vary accordingly.