Addressing the Impact of COVID-19 on the Prostate Cancer Racial Disparity Panel Discussion

The session presenters were joined on the panel by other leaders to discuss the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the prostate cancer racial disparity, and the challenges to move progress forward towards eliminating the disparity.

“The core is you’ve got to screen. If you don’t screen you can’t treat and if you don’t treat you can’t save lives.”

– Jacques Carter, MD, MPH, Assistant Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School

“Community groups need to advocate for themselves, and patients need to get to the primary care doctor first and then there’s understanding that prostate cancer is a major issue in Black and African American men and needs to be addressed.”


“Patients need to get to their primary care doctor first. For vulnerable populations, you need to be advocates. Getting the family involved, for the women in their lives or loved ones, making sure that the patient makes it to the primary care doctor and follows-up and follows through.”

-Richard Lee, MD, PhD, Medical Oncologist, Massachusetts General Hospital


“If you do not have any prostate cancer education, you cannot advocate for yourself. Knowledge is the best defense against prostate cancer.”


“I tell men, you have the ability to make decisions. Don’t just count anything out. Just because you go and see a urologist doesn’t mean you have to do what they recommend.”


“At community outreach events, we give men literature that they can give to their providers. We send them with the article with our guidelines so we can explain to them why they need to have that follow-up.”

-Angelo Moore, PhD, RN, Assistant Director of Community Outreach

Engagement and Equity, Duke Cancer Institute


“The primary care doctor is the quarterback for most men that we see and that’s a really important role in getting them to the right healthcare provider.”


“We have a lot of education for our patients on making sure that they understand the results. PSA results are often very confusing.”

-Wendy Poage, MHA, President, Prostate Conditions Education Council (PCEC)


“The AUA believes it is of the utmost importance to support the PSA Screening for HIM Act. This act would allow men to be covered for prostate cancer screenings, which is especially important for African American men and men who have a history of prostate Cancer so that it can be detected early on.”

-Jsaela Barrow MPH, Advocacy Coordinator, American Urological Association (AUA)


“I remember when all of the guidelines came out not to screen, and I totally disagreed with what the guidelines were saying because that’s not what I was seeing in my medical practice.”


“Most black men had no idea about what a PSA test was and even when they did, they were not adamant about having you do one.”


“I’m so glad that we have highlighted the need to have a primary care doctor, because that’s where the education starts.”

-Thaddeus Bell, MD, Prostate Cancer Survivor / Family Doctor,

Founder of Closing The Gap in Healthcare


“I feel that PHEN really gets it and understands how to engage and really saturate important messages within the African American community.”


“I’m seeing the American Cancer Society pick up a lot more volume and steam towards addressing the African American prostate cancer disparity.”

-Mr. Dave Ford, Prostate Cancer Survivor,

Senior Manager at Southern California Edison and Board Member of American Cancer Society

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