Cancer-prevention plan by Kanter, Schottinger wins quality award

Launched in 2011, the program aimed at reducing colon cancer deaths by half saved about 125 lives annually in its first six years.

May 21, 2020

Michael Kanter, MD, professor and chair of clinical science for the Kaiser Permanente Bernard J. Tyson School of Medicine, and Joanne Schottinger, MD, associate professor of health systems science, created a cancer-prevention initiative for the Kaiser Permanente Southern California Region in 2011, titled, “The Moonshot Goal–In Ten Years, Reduce Colorectal Cancer Mortality in Half,” which has now received the organization’s 2020 Vohs Quality Regional Award. The award recognizes projects that exemplify Kaiser Permanente’s focus on providing high-quality, affordable care, and its recipients have implemented successful practices and developed knowledge that can be shared across the organization.

The “Moonshot Goal” has enabled Kaiser Permanente Southern California to help save many lives. Measuring colon cancer mortality on a population basis has allowed the organization to better focus on aspects of care, such as timely access to chemotherapy, surveillance rates after treatment, and referral to surgical oncology. The learnings and new innovative methods garnered from this work have already started to spread to other Kaiser Permanente regions and are being used in the treatment and mortality reduction of other, similarly deadly diseases, such as lung cancer, kidney failure, or diabetes.

Many physicians, nurses, clinicians, quality leaders, and staff members were involved in the initiative, contributing to the success of this program. The team-based care created a highly effective program that continues to save lives in the Southern California region as the 10-year moonshot initiative continues. This award demonstrates the best of the Vohs Quality Award—innovation, sharing, and saving lives.