Continuing Medical Education Program

The TBA Foundation is in the process of creating a continuing medical education program to help medical teams – oncologists and key treatment staffs –serve their myeloma patients most effectively.


Program Goals

1. Improve the effectiveness of the teaching and instruction that physicians give their patients

2. Increase patient ability to understand and to follow directions

3. Double or triple patient receptivity to clinical trial participation

4. Decrease co-morbidity factors by better preparation of patients for this possibility and improved understanding of factors that may encourage new illnesses

5. Improve interactions and efficiencies between third parties and the patient’s primary healing team which may include off-site therapists, cost-benefit disagreements with health insurance providers, home care practitioners, pharmacies, various attorney services, and, intrusive, counterproductive legislation caused by misinformation and frustration

6. Make material, direct contributions to extended high quality patient life expectancies



Informed myeloma patients know that medical research into their disease is progressing. Though a cure may not be imminent, neither is death in many cases. Tools are needed to help the physician most effectively guide a patient toward this still uncertain but more positive future.

The death threat implied by a multiple myeloma diagnosis is unsettling to both patients and their physicians. The ways both patients and physicians respond need to be clinically described and their implications explained to healing teams. This is not a simple matter, and it is quite delicate; often further complicated by cultural or ethnic bias.

The data this project will present must meet accepted scientific standards. This will require statistically relevant representative sampling of our country’s patient population.

Geographic and demographic dispersion

The continental United States will be roughly quartered. Nine multiple myeloma-specific support groups will be chosen within each section, representing insofar as possible, varying population densities, ethnic concentrations, and urban or rural lifestyles. Other key demographics that will be documented within the support groups include:

  • age
  • marital status
  • family makeup
  • education
  • race
  • diet
  • health
  • occupation


Study baseline development

Interviews with four, geographically dispersed myeloma treatment teams, physicians and key staff, will determine key aspects of typical patient profiles. Focus here will be on identifying patient points of view at the time they enroll for treatment, how well they understand their prognosis, grasp of true nature of the treatments they will receive, and how well they are able to follow directions.

Past studies of myeloma and other cancer patients will be examined. An Internet literature search, a Veterans Administration study, data from the archives of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, American Cancer Society, the National Cancer Institute, and other very well-qualified input is expected.

National nonprofits that are dedicated to serve myeloma patients will be interviewed. Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, International Myeloma Foundation, Institute for Myeloma and Bone Cancer Research, Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation and the Waldenstrom’s Macroglobulinemia Foundation. Our initial impression is that these organizations’ patient counselors, in particular, believe they know these people and their concerns quite well.

Design of investigative tools

Two sets of interview tools will be designed and tested for myeloma focus groups.

1. An anonymous questionnaire will be administrated to collect personal data.

2. Focus group techniques will be used to collect general census material.

There are sensitivities to be acknowledged and worked through. HIPPA and other legal roadblocks to efficient information management are among them.

Project Completion

A qualified CME program will be ready for presentation to medical teams at the end of this project. It will include:

  • PowerPoint presentation
  • Softbound handout suitable for a medical library
  • Published, or soon-to-be- published book
  • DVD version of the book’s content
  • Several articles for appropriate professional journals

The CME Audience

There are 4,200 medical centers in the United States with fully developed oncology centers and another 80,000 clinics offering services to cancer patients. In addition, more than 100,000 labs in the United States contribute to cancer research. A majority of them will have an interest in the findings of this project.


Corporate Sponsors

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Phone: 424.233.0009
Fax: 424.233.0689
Address: 5130 Cathann St.
Torrance, CA 90503


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