Ganschow named new director of UI Cancer Center survivorship program

Pamela Ganschow’s professional home is moving, but one thing in her life remains constant: her passion to help patients survive cancer.

Ganschow, MD, has been named the new clinical director of the Cancer Prevention and Survivorship program at the University of Illinois Cancer Center. With the support of the University of Illinois Chicago’s Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs, Ganschow joins the cancer center as a 23-year veteran of Cook County Health (CCH) where she built innovative programs that enable equitable, high-quality access to cancer screening and prevention services for underserved populations. She is scheduled to begin her new position on March 1.

Ganschow is an oncogeneralist – an internal medicine physician whose work focuses primarily on cancer, a continuum of care from prevention and screening (including assessing risk factors) through survivorship and palliative care services. A graduate of the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine in Ohio, Ganschow said her goal is to expand UI Cancer Center’s survivorship program, build a comprehensive cancer genetics service, and contribute to cross-disciplinary research in cancer prevention and control.

“I am truly excited for this new opportunity to work with interprofessional colleagues to design and evaluate programs that can more widely scale access to high quality, timely and state-of-the-art cancer prevention, control and survivorship clinical services across diverse populations,” she said.

“Dr. Ganschow has dedicated her professional life to work in cancer control,” said Jan Kitajewski, PhD, director of the UI Cancer Center. “She has a demonstrated track record of innovation in building programs that enable equitable, high-quality access to cancer screening, and prevention services for underserved populations. In her new role, Dr. Ganschow will increase access to high quality, timely, scalable, and state-of-the-art cancer prevention and control, in addition to survivorship clinical services.

“In support of these objectives, Dr. Ganschow’s team will expand upon the UIC Cancer Survivorship program, build a comprehensive cancer genetics program, expand access to genetic services, and increase cross-disciplinary research opportunities in cancer prevention and control.”

Most recently, Ganschow also served as medical director of the Cancer Risk/Cancer Genetics Program, Residency Program Director for Preventive Medicine, and Section Chief for Women’s Health at CCH. During her tenure she secured several million dollars in grant funding to enhance training programs and implement interventions that improve access to, and quality of, breast health care services – from outreach through screening and diagnosis.

Her research interests include racial disparities in breast cancer outcomes and implementation science as it relates to individualized cancer risk assessment/management and scaling cancer genetics services into primary care. Ganschow’s accolades include being the recipient of a Research Scholar Grant in Health Services by the American Cancer Society to examine patient and system barriers contributing to delays in diagnosing and treating breast cancer among underserved populations.

In addition to clinical care and research, Ganschow also teaches and provides mentorship to medical students, residents, and fellows. She regularly speaks on various topics related to women’s health and cancer genetics to health professionals and has served on various committees at the state and national levels to inform cancer prevention and control initiatives.