Healthy Survivorship Mission
Healthy Survivorship’s mission is to provide tools and resources to empower cancer survivors to live healthier lives.
The purpose of HealthySurvivorship.org is to increase awareness and education among cancer survivors for late effects of cancer, the need for regular health and cancer screening and check ups. The site includes a personalized healthy survivorship assessment tool to help survivors self-assess and to provide kudos and recommendation to help them become healthier survivors. Information on how and why to have a cancer survivorship plan is also included as are numerous helpful links and references.
HealthySurvivorship.org was created and is maintained by the Texas A&M Health Science Center School of Public Health. While some of the references are Texas-specific, the site can be used by any survivor, healthcare professional or caregiver in the United States. This site is intended for adults. The minimum age for use of this site and the information on this site is 18 years of age.
Defining Cancer Survivorship
Healthy Survivorship uses the definition of cancer survivorship provided by the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship in 1986: “ The process of living with, through, and beyond cancer. By this definition, cancer survivorship begins at diagnosis. It includes people who continue to have treatment to either reduce risk of recurrence or to manage chronic disease.”
There are at least 3 distinct phases associated with cancer survival, including the time from diagnosis to the end of initial treatment, the transition from treatment to extended survival, and long-term survival.
After a cancer diagnosis, many cancer survivors speak of a “new normal.” Many cancer survivors say they appreciate life more and that their priorities about career, lifestyle and relationships change. All cancer survivors experience their cancer differently; some become more anxious about their health and become uncertain of how to cope with their health and the effects of their cancer experience. Frequently, people who have experienced cancer consider their close friends and families “co-survivors” based on the experiences they had as a cancer caregiver.
Healthy Survivorship Team – Texas A&M Health Science Center School of Public Health
Marcia Ory, PhD, MPH
Associate Dean of Research
Regents & Distinguished Professor
Healthy Survivorship Editor
Dr. Ory’s research focus includes cancer survivorship and chronic disease management, aging and health promotion, doctor-older patient interactions and translational research. She serves as a Principal Investigator on a number of social and behavioral interventions for helping underserved populations reduce their cancer risks and improve cancer survivorship. She has taken a lead role in the School of Public Health achieving CEO Cancer Gold Standard accreditation in recognition of its promotion of a healthier cancer-free workplace. Dr. Ory, who is also the Director of the Program on Healthy Aging, has spent the last ten years evaluating the implementation and dissemination of evidence-based health promotion programs for middle aged and older adults, who are at increased risk for cancer.
Deborah Vollmer Dahlke, DrPH, MPAff
Adjunct Assistant Professor
Healthy Survivorship Editor
Dr. Vollmer Dahlke’s research interests include adolescent and young adult cancer survivorship, mHealth and digital technology applications and evaluation of quality improvements in mHealth. She has led the development of a number of mHealth applications including AYA Healthy Survivorship, MyHealthFinder, Navi4Health, NaviCanPlan and Healthy Survivorship. She is a serial entrepreneur in biotech and software and serves as consultant for early stage cancer drug development firms providing strategic insight for business plans and applications for both venture and non-dilutive funds.
Deb Kellstedt, MPH
Ms. Kellstedt has managed a number of cancer prevention and control research projects including multiple interdisciplinary efforts focused on mobile health technology and community-based initiatives (iCanFit, NaviCanPlan, MyHealthFinder, HealthySurvivorship). She manages a National Cancer Institute-funded study exploring physical activity and the built environment, and she was Project Director of a five year CDC-funded Cancer Prevention and Control Research Project Network (CPCRN) program. In addition to day-to-day program management on multiple projects, she has led mHealth usability and acceptability testing protocols, and oversees a worksite wellness program at the Texas A&M School of Public Health.
Scott Horel, MAG
GIS And Data Technical Manager
Scott has more than 10 years of experience working with large complex datasets, data queries and retrieval and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Scott has provided data management and GIS research and coordination for a number of mHealth projects at SPH including iCanFit and MyHealthFinder. Scott managed the web and mobile application (iOS and Android) implementations for MyHealthFinder and the integration of MyHealthFinder onto the HealthySurvivorship platform.
Healthy Survivorship Advisory Board
Christopher Hamilton, MPH
Seton Healthcare Family Program Manager
Seton Cancer Survivor Center
Christopher joined the Seton Healthcare Family as the clinic manager for the LIVESTRONG Survivorship Center at Dell Children’s Medical Center, a pediatric cancer survivor clinic. After building a successful survivorship program, he then began to develop a survivorship program specific to adolescents and young adults, including work with Deborah Vollmer Dahlke on provider education on AYA survivorship issues, complimented by work on a mobile app for cancer survivors. The Seton Cancer Survivor Center now has dedicated programs for AYAs and has expanded to now serve all cancer survivors.
Health Behaviour Research Centre, University College London
Gemma is a PhD candidate developing a health behaviour intervention designed specifically for teenage and young adult cancer survivors in the United Kingdom. Gemma is currently carrying out several studies of TYA cancer survivors investigating their current health and lifestyle behaviours, their perceived importance of health related behaviour, experience of receiving lifestyle advice and interest in information relating to health behaviour such as physical activity, diet, smoking, alcohol consumption and sun safety. Gemma is a current trainee member of the National Cancer Research Institute Teenage and Young Adult Clinical Studies Group.
Abigail Fisher, PhD
Health Behaviour Research Centre, University College London
Dr. Fisher has expertise in physical activity both for the prevention and treatment of chronic disease, with a particular focus on cancer. Dr Fisher leads a stream of research in cancer survivorship that focusses on trialling exercise as part of usual care for cancer patients, and health behaviour change for people who have been affected by cancer. She is interested in new areas of research testing whether novel technologies (like virtual reality and apps) can be used to change disease risk perceptions and promote healthy lifestyle choices. Abi is an active member of the National Cancer Research Institute Lifestyle and Behaviour Change Clinical Studies Group.
State Leader, Young Survival Coalition
Sandy is a global patient advocate sharing a message of hope for those who’ve experienced a cancer diagnosis to utilize their story for legislative, research and patient advocacy after first finding their own voice for personal care. Sandy Castillo graduated from Texas A&M with a Bachelor in Environmental Design in Architecture, and recently received Distinguished Honors from the Leadership Institute for Nonprofit Executives from Rice University.
Betsy Risendal, PhD
University of Colorado
Armin Weinberg, PhD
Adjunct Professor TX A&M Health Science Center
School of Public Health
Dr. Weinberg is a Clinical Professor at Baylor College of Medicine, Adjunct Professor at Rice University, Adjunct Professor at the Texas A&M School of Public Health and Co-founder of the Intercultural Cancer Council. He served as the CEO of the Life Beyond Cancer Foundation from 2011-2015 which partnered with TAMU SPH on the development of MyHealthFinder ™ which is being implemented as a part of C-Change’s Geographic Intervention Project in Mississippi.
Sponsors and Contributors
Healthy Survivorship is supported by a number of sponsors and organizations which provide both funding and content resources including those listed below:
Acronyms Used in Website
- DrPH Doctorate in Public Health
- PhD Doctor of Philosophy
- MPH Master of Public Health
- MAG Master of Geography
- MPAff Master of Public Affairs
- AYA Adolescent and Young Adult
Does Not Replace Advice of a Medical Professional
The medical information on this Healthy Survivorship site or the associated apps is provided as an information resource only, and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes. This information is not intended to be patient education, does not create any patient-physician relationship, and should not be used as a substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment. The information provided on this site is intended to complement, nor replace the relationship between a patient and his/her own physician.
Please consult your health care provider before making any healthcare decisions or for guidance about a specific medical condition. The TX A&M Health Science Center School of Public Health expressly disclaims responsibility, and shall have no liability, for any damages, loss, injury, or liability whatsoever suffered as a result of your reliance on the information contained in this site. The school does not endorse specifically any test, treatment, or procedure mentioned on the site. If you do not agree with the foregoing terms and conditions you should not enter this site.
Disclosure of Conflicts of Interest
None of the editors, team members or members of the Healthy Survivorship team have any conflicts to disclose.
Funding Sources for Healthy Survivorship
Funding sources for the Healthy Survivorship app include a variety of sources including the TX A&M Health Science Center School of Public Health, the Texas Department of State Health Services, and the Texas A&M Prevention Research Center and the Cancer Prevention and Control Research Network (CPCRN), members of the Prevention Research Centers Program. The CPCRN is supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Cancer Institute through cooperative agreement number 1U48DP0010924.
The Healthy Survivorship web application does not host or receive funding from advertising or the display of commercial content.