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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Cancer, Health, Philanthropy, Private Independent Foundations, Technology

Mission: ICAN provides Personalized Medicine Cancer Case Management Programs, through its customized patient advocacy services, to Stage IV patients who have been written off by their oncology teams. The organization specializes in complex and rare diagnoses, whether pediatric or adult cancers. ICAN, given years of experience with oncology issues and the anticancer drug pipeline, assists patients in the battle to extend life with high quality of life through physician referrals, cutting-edge information and advocacy services, clinical trials research, compassionate use analysis, molecular profiling services, and palliative care program services. ICAN has been profiled in Newsweek based on the still enduring complete remission of one of its breast cancer patients and in Pharmaceutical Executive Magazine (where ICAN was viewed as the exemplar of cancer patient advocacy--out of 5000 organizations to choose from). ICAN has also been featured in the Robert A. Nagourney, M.D.'s pivotal book "Outliving Cancer" and is featured in the upcoming biography of anticancer drug discoverer G. Robert Pettit, PhD (published in June 2015).

Results: When you are dealing with individual cancer patients and their specific cases, the metrics are extending time to progression and working toward disease-free survival. The question becomes "compared to what?" since no cancer patient is like any other cancer patient. The one metric that counts at ICAN is an overwhelming number of our patients, given the countless accolades we have received over the past 20 years, testify to ICAN's pivotal assistance in making a critical difference in life prolongation and quality of life issues. On the metric of "Was there a stone left unturned in the patient's journey with cancer?", our ICAN patients and their families resoundingly answer "No."

Target demographics: All ages, all socioeconomic backgrounds.

Direct beneficiaries per year: more than 1000 patient/spouse advocate/care partner/public inquiry cases at ICAN.

Geographic areas served: While we are headquartered in Phoenix/Scottsdale, we work throughout Arizona; across the US and all territories; 53 countries worldwide

Programs: Our Personalized Medicine Cancer Case Management Programs and our Cancer Patient Advocacy and Clinical Trials Advocacy Programs--as well as ICAN's more than one hundred Named Programs (named by families in memory of or in honor of a loved one in the battle)--may be found on our website at http://askican.org

Community Stories

59 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Client Served

Rating: 5

My husband read about ICAN in the December 2011 Newsweek article and encouraged me to contact them. We had just emerged from several months of intense treatment for metastatic Stage IV breast cancer (my original diagnosis and treatment was in 2006), including emergency spine surgery, and almost eight weeks of radiation treatment. When a Pet scan revealed there was no improvement but actually progression in my disease on hormone therapy, we were both stunned, scared and very disappointed. After a few days of processing this bad news, I pulled up the ICAN website and sent off an email immediately. Within a few days I was speaking to Marcia Horn, President and CEO of ICAN. Our conversation took almost an hour of Marcia's time, while I feverishly scribbled down notes. Before speaking to Marcia that morning, I was feeling terribly anxious and pessimistic. Marcia urged me to join the percentage of breast cancer patients who have survived their odds, suggesting names of exciting new treatments and specialists who would consult with me. Marcia urged me to consider taking a closer, more comprehensive look at my individual pathology and gave me information to follow up with Caris Life Sciences, a state of the art lab in Dallas doing some very exciting work. We are still waiting to determine if chemotherapy is next in line for me, but at Marcia's insistence we are now in the position to determine what might be the most effective step for me. And one that might save my life. I am only 48 years old and have two young daughters and a loving husband and family to live for. The next time I saw my doctor I came with a stack of notes and questions, and now the data of the Caris lab results. I am so grateful for Marcia and her team of volunteers at ICAN for giving me a sense of empowerment at this most critical time of my life.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I consider ICAN to be a very helpful breast cancer support network. They have taken the time to find information for me concerning a vaccine trial, as well they are looking into oncology services in my area which might fit my situation. I appreciate the assistance of Marcia Horn and ICAN.

Client Served

Rating: 5

After hearing the diagnosis of breast cancer and words/phrases that I did not understand, I called Marcia Horn, ICAN's Pres/CEO. Here brother urged me to call her and I am so glad I did. It was a couple of days before Christmas 2011. I do not remember much about Christmas and New Year's 2011. However, I remember every single conversation I had with her between December 23 and January 10 (and we continue to talk). Marcia's calm and reassuring willingness to share her expertise was our rock until we finally spoke to the team of doctors that are taking care of our daughter. I will forever be grateful to have Marcia explain every step of the way - what to expect good/bad/ugly. Because of Marcia and ICAN I am stronger through this "pink journey," as our granddaughter Nikki calls her mom's breast cancer diagnosis/prognosis.

judy

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I moved to Phoenix in 2007 after being diagnosed with breat cancer & treated in New York back in 2005. In 2010 the cancer returned and not knowing many physicians here I turned to family for referrals. I was told to contact ICAN & spoke with a wonderful person who guided me with a plan of attack with many different doctors. If it were not for the generous help of great people I could not get through this.I am grateful to ICAN for all their assistance.

Previous Stories

Client Served

Rating: 5

When I was diagnosed with breast cancer for the second time I did not know where to turn for advice and referrals. I am new to the state of Arizona and was told about ICAN through a relative. I contacted Marcia Horn & she took hours on the phone & follow up e-mails helpiing me.
I am from New York and did not have the good fortune of having such a great service as ICAN; of course there were avenues to explore through the hospitals and breast cancer centers. It was left up to the individual to find good doctors.
What we need is a better recognition of ICAN nationwide to enhance the tools needed for helping people diagnosed with cancer.

Client Served

Rating: 5

My wife has Stage IV Metastatic Breast Cancer. It can be quite a challenge to figure out the best approach to take in dealing with it. Marcia at ICAN has been very helpful. We informed her with what procedures, drugs and doctors we were using, then advised and encourage us on what we could do further.

Client Served

Rating: 5

My experience with ICAN has kept me sane about a diagnosis that can send one spinning down a black hole because you are totally ignorant when you are first given such diagnosis. You do not think of breast cancer as coming to live with you and when it happens, it is a 24 hour nightmare from which you cannot wake up. Thanks to ICAN I was able to focus on what had to be done. The kind tone of an understanding voice that had answer after answer for me and my family has made the breast cancer diagnosis be what it is. We have faced it, we are working through it, and thanks to ICAN and its guidence, we have our lives back under control. Thank you, Marcia.

Client Served

Rating: 5

ICAN advocates do great work for breast cancer patients! Helpful in all fields, caring, encouraging and information.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was diagnosed with Malignant Melanoma in January 2011 and underwent a full node removal under the arm in February. During the recovery period I was faced with many options regarding which clinical trial I could partake in, this is where I was introduced to the ICAN service. From the moment I contacted them I knew I was speaking to a team of people that really did understand what I was going through and the many decisions I was faced with. ICAN provided me with the most up to date research and analysis and we discussed many different options. Their guidance was 1st class and gave me the reassurance that I was so much in need of.

I wouldnt hesitate to recommend the services of ICAN, they really do put the client/patient first with the care an attention that is so greatly needed when dealing with Cancer.

Lynn L.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I found the “The International Cancer Advocacy Network (ICAN)” when I was first diagnosed with Stage 4 Melanoma. My doctors gave me 6-9 months to live and offered me palliative treatment. No one even mentioned clinical trials. In my desperation I searched for my own treatments and found Marcia at ICAN. Together ICAN assisted me in connecting to trials, and on some occasions even telephoning them to find out why it was taking so long to get back to me. ICAN knows time is precious and we don't have time to waste waiting....
ICAN also assisted me in researching and finding the most recent immunotherapy/drugs available, researched types of surgeries and pushed me to move forward in times I faltered. I needed support and they provided that, as professionals and as friends I could rely on in my times of distress. I am currently diagnosed as stage 4 melanoma and NED (No Evidence of Disease). I have been NED for 15 months. In June 2009 I was told I would be dead in 6-9 months...ICAN helped me make the life altering decisions that I can honestly say gave me life! I'm still standing and I am still here!!

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was diagnosed with two cases of Cancer simultaneously: Melanoma & Esophageal.

ICAN connected me with a MOHS (I never before even heard of MOHS) surgeon who removed the Melanoma. Now, unless I point it out, no one even sees the scar on the middle of my forehead.

ICAN connected me with a Medical Oncologist and a Radiation Oncologist.

Now, quarterly PET/CAT & Endoscopy find no evidence of Cancer in my esophagus!