Global Health Equity

The International Gynecologic Cancer Society stands at the forefront in the global fight against gynecologic cancers, supporting and sponsoring programs “to enhance the care of women with gynecologic cancer worldwide through education and training and public awareness.”

Consistent with this mission and our focus on benefit to women and given the current heightened global awareness of and attention to social and health inequity, IGCS is issuing the following statement outlining its position on these important matters. Most succinctly put, IGCS supports all who espouse social and health equity around the globe.

Our statement provides clear context and specificity to our longstanding and forward-moving embrace of these important social justice and human right imperatives. We hope that it stimulates dialogue/discourse, and we welcome your comments. Most importantly, we hope that it prompts programming and actions that improve the lives of girls, women, and communities worldwide.


Global Health Equity: A Social Justice and Human Rights Imperative

IGCS Supports All Who Espouse Social and Health Equity Around the Globe 

As a core principle, the concept of global health equity—the absence of systematic disparities in health to allow the opportunity for every person to attain her (or his) full health potential—is embedded in the mission of the International Gynecologic Cancer Society (IGCS) and is reflected in the breadth of our membership and the design and implementation of our programs.

With over 3,100 members from low-, middle-, and high-income countries around the globe, IGCS has purposefully developed an inclusive membership framework that encourages interaction and growth across diverse social, political, and health care systems. Through this framework, IGCS connects our members with specific needs to those with corresponding resources and programs; forms partnerships; educates, trains, and mentors clinicians, survivors-patients, and caregivers; and otherwise enhances benefits to women not only in optimal but also in the most challenging circumstances and environments.

Since our establishment in 1987 as a forum for the worldwide exchange of scientific information, IGCS has grown as a model for global health equity, and consistent with that history and our current operation, IGCS supports individuals and organizations meaningfully engaged, at whatever level, in the journey toward social and health equity worldwide.

As we lead the global fight against gynecologic cancers, we do so with the clear understanding that prompting, promoting, and inspiring maximum achievable health outcomes for every girl and woman (and thus every community)—wherever and under whatever circumstance she might live—are fundamental to the social justice and human rights imperative of global health equity, irrespective of

  • national origin or political system
  • location of residence/citizenship
  • race or ethnicity
  • religion
  • sexual orientation and/or gender identity
  • local, national, or regional leadership
  • sociodemographic factors
  • geopolitics
  • any other intervening factor

In keeping with this understanding and by focusing our work and service where they can have the greatest impact on health and well-being, IGCS supports the empowerment of girls and women—and the health professionals who serve them—so they can attain the best health and life outcomes specific to but not limited to gynecologic cancers.

In the coming weeks and months, IGCS will review our programming. Furthermore, as an act of social responsibility, we will continually review the health equity-explicit initiatives within our portfolio and identify the need for new initiatives where none exist. After all, our mission “to enhance the care of women with gynecologic cancer worldwide through education and training and public awareness” and our demonstrated commitment to global health equity explicitly require as much.

Download PDF of this statement.

Women4Women Summit

2020 Virtual Advocacy Survivor-Caregiver Public Summit: Women4Women
Promoted and Hosted by IGCS

Saturday, September 26, 2020
8:00 AM – 12:00 PM CST
See more time zones.


Download Agenda


Register Here


Registration is free but required. If you have questions or require assistance, please email Instructions on how to access the virtual summit will be emailed to each registrant prior to the summit.

Summit Highlights

Gynecologic Cancer Literacy
We’ll cover all the basics of gynecologic cancers: symptoms and risks, early detection, hereditary breast and ovarian cancer, genetic testing, and patient rights and options such as maintenance therapy. This session would not be complete without discussing clinical trials and cutting-edge research and findings.

Survivorship 101: Focus on Quality of Life
Let’s talk Survivorship—quality of life and wellness from diagnosis onward—and get very personal! We’ll have frank exchanges about body image, sexual health, intimacy, fertility, nutrition, and self-care as well as about work-life balance and other concerns specific to working women. And we’ll learn to document our individual journeys.

The Power of Patient Advocacy
While having a primer on the Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How of patient advocacy, we’ll tap into its regional and global power and the benefits of creating and maintaining a strong, inclusive Global Advocacy Network. And, we’ll explore the tangible, documented power of advocacy.

Optional Concurrent Bonus Sessions
Following the plenary Summit sessions, two optional sessions will be available for Summit participants: (1) Treatment, Clinical Trials, Telemedicine/Telehealth in Backdrop of COVID-19 and (2) Patient-Centric Table Talk: Education & Exchange Session.

View Speakers Zoom Tips and “We Create” Instructions

IGCS 2020 Post-Meeting

The 2020 IGCS Annual Global Meeting was a great success with nearly 2,000 registered delegates. We are so proud that our digital platform allowed nearly 200 speakers to share their research and expertise reaching the gynecologic cancer community worldwide.

We are extremely grateful to our technology partners at iCrossing, Inc. for their hard work and dedication in developing the Meeting Portal and their support to our staff, speakers and delegates throughout the duration of the meeting. We could not have done it without them.

Here is some important post-meeting information for the delegates. Delegate who have questions or need assistance regarding the meeting, please send an email to

Claim Continuing Medical Education Credits

Before September 25,2020:

  1. Click on the following link: EVALUATION FORM
    Please note that web browsers Mozilla Firefox 2.X or higher, or Google Chrome are recommended. If you are unable to complete the evaluation link above, download the PDF evaluation form here:—eaccme.pdf 
  1. Complete the online evaluation form and hit submit.
  2. The CME/CPD certificate will be sent via email once received the form duly filled in.

E-mail: for assistance with CME. Read more about CME Accreditation here. 

Certificate of Attendance

A certificate of attendance will be emailed to all registered delegates within 7 days of the meeting ending. Please keep your eye out for an email from with your certificate.

View Session Recordings

Session recordings are available within the meeting portal, separated by the channel where the session originally aired and will be available until September 24th via the congress portal, using your login details.

Simply navigate to the sessions, select the channel you are interested in, then click the button in the top right-hand corner. You will be taken to the channel catch-up page where you can access all the sessions from this channel.

Access Links to all Session Recordings Here


IGCS 2020 Meeting Access

To access the IGCS 2020 xDigital Annual Global Meeting Portal, go to


Registered Delegates: Your unique access code was sent via email in a message from with the subject line “IMPORTANT: DELEGATE PASS – IGCS xDigital.”

If you cannot find the email message with your access code, please check your spam filter first.
If you cannot locate the message, please email

💬 Help and support

A dedicated email and live chat will be available to delegates 24 hours a day throughout the congress for any assistance or queries that arise. Access the live chat through the Help and Support page on when the congress portal is open or email us at

🖥️ Browser Requirements

The browsers listed below are compatible with the congress portal:
• Windows: Edge 12+, IE 11+, Firefox 27+, Chrome 30+
• Mac: Recommended: Chrome 30+ (Safari is not supported)
• Linux: Firefox 27+, Chrome 30+

💻 Operating System Requirements

Check your computer’s operating system before the start of the congress to ensure the software works with the congress portal. See below list of compatible operating systems:
• MacOS X with macOS 10.7 or later
• Windows 10*, 8.1, 8, 7
• Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.4 or higher
• iOS 7.0 or later
• iPadOS 13 or later
• Android 4.0x or later

*Windows 10 Home, Pro or Enterprise only. S Mode is not supported.

Symposium – Desktop device
We recommend viewing the symposium on your desktop device for the best experience.

The xDigital platform is a unique, custom-built environment that leverages a number of different technologies. One of these technologies is Zoom. Please check your company usage policies if you are using company equipment to access the congress. If Zoom is prohibited, you will need to request special dispensation to use it, or arrange an alternative device.

IGCS 2020 Abstracts

Download the abstracts to be presented at the IGCS 2020 Annual Global Meeting:

Download the Program Book.

Learn more about IGCS 2020 and register at

Frequently Asked Questions

Registered delegates should have received their unique login code to access the Meeting Portal via email from on or after September 2nd, depending on when they registered. If you have not received the email, please check your spam filter first. If you have not received your code, email for assistance.

2020 Award Recipients

These award recipients will be recognized at the upcoming xDigital Annual Global Meeting of the International Gynecologic Cancer Society which will be held in a fully digital setting this September 10-13, 2020. The Awards Ceremony will take place during the Opening Ceremony on September 10th at 2:00 p.m. UCT.

Please join us in congratulating them on their achievements!

2020 Lifetime Achievement Award Recipients

Monica Bacon, RN

Co-Founder of the Gynecologic Cancer InterGroup (GCIG), Ms. Bacon is a recipient of the IGCS 2020 Lifetime Achievement Award for her lifelong dedication to women’s health and serving the gynecologic cancer community though nursing, clinical trial coordination and international team building, advocacy, and volunteerism.

Read more about Monica.

Nicoletta Colombo, MD, PhD

Principle investigator of several international clinical trials and established author, Professor Colombo is the recipient of the IGCS 2020 Lifetime Achievement Award for her exemplary leadership in multiple gynecologic oncology organizations, and lifelong commitment to science, research and clinical trials.

Read more about Nicoletta.

2020 Excellence in Teaching Award Recipient

Rahel Ghebre, MD, MPH

For her mentorship and leadership with gynecologic oncology sub-specialty training programs in Ethiopia, specifically at Addis Ababa University and initiating a program at St. Paul’s Millenium Medical College. This award recognizes a deep commitment and dedication to gynecologic oncology, exemplifying the core components of teaching and education.

Read more about Rahel.

2020 Distinguished Advocacy Award Recipients

Runcie C.W. Chidebe & Project PINK BLUE
For outstanding advocacy throughout Nigeria and in global forums, including founding Project PINK BLUE—an organization focused on cancer advocacy, oncology training, and research—as well as influencing the establishment of the National Institute for Cancer Research and Treatment, developing numerous programs to serve the most needy, and changing cancer awareness and care throughout Nigeria

Read more about Runcie & Project PINK BLUE.

Nathalie Dauphin McKenzie, MD (USA) &
Innovating Health International (Haiti)
For courageous, ongoing advocacy for survivors-patients in the USA and Haiti, including traveling to Haiti several times a year—at great personal risk—to perform life-saving surgeries (otherwise unavailable) and to train oncologists to do the same, currently primarily through Innovating Health International, a Port-au-Prince based women’s cancer center, where no patient is ever turned away because of treatment costs

Read more about Nathalie & Innovating Health International.

Ovarian Cancer Research Alliance
For dedicated service to advocate and research communities, as the largest global, non-government funder of ovarian cancer research, having raised over $100 million for research/services and developed and conducted extensive advocacy programs including Survivors Teaching Students® through which ovarian cancer survivors and family members have trained/reached nearly 100,000 medical and other health professions students

Read more about the Ovarian Cancer Research Alliance.

2020 IJGC Award Recipients

The International Journal of Gynecological Cancer (IJGC) is a joint publication of the International Gynecologic Cancer Society (IGCS) and the European Society of Gynaecological Cancer (ESGO). The IJGC Awards are presented at the IGCS and ESGO Annual Meetings on alternate years. This year, the IJGC Awards will be presented at the 2020 IGCS Annual Global Meeting.

Most Downloaded Paper Award (2020)

Gloria Salvo, MD
for the paper titled
“Updates and management algorithm for neuroendocrine tumors of the uterine cervix”

Editor’s Choice Award (2020)

David Cibula, MD, PhD
for the paper titled
“European Society of Gynaecological Oncology quality indicators for surgical treatment of cervical cancer”

View Top 10 Journal Reviewers of 2020

Spotlight on IGCS Fellows & Mentors

The IGCS Member Spotlight is back, now with a focus on Fellows and International Mentors participating in the IGCS Global Curriculum & Mentorship Program.

Dawit Worku Kassa
Addis Ababa University

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Fellow of the IGCS Global Curriculum & Mentorship Program

Where did you complete your training? Or tell us about your background in gyn oncology.
I completed three years of gyn oncology training at Addis Ababa University and completed my fellowship in January 2019. I also took the German gynecologic oncology group (AGO) licensure examination. I have been enrolled in the IGCS fellowship program since 2018.  

Why did you decide to pursue a career in gyn oncology or what about it interested you?
I did my residency (specialization) in OBGYN at Addis Ababa University, Blacklion Hospital. During my residencyI realized there are only a few (around 5) gynecologic oncologists in the whole country and nearly all are referred to this hospital for care. The combination of scarce skilled human power with a high number of reproductive organ cancers made the waiting time unacceptably long. This is the reason why I decided to do further study in gynecologic oncology.  

Tell us about your work in women’s cancer: daily activities and/or special projects.
My weekly gynecologic oncology schedule includes one day outpatient clinic, making regular rounds on patients admitted for surgery, prescribing and the administration of chemotherapy and two days of surgery. Apart from these clinical activities, I am involved in teaching undergraduate medical students and resident physicians. I also work as a member of the national task force for the prevention of cervical cancer and as a board member of the Ethiopian Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ESOG). 

What is the most rewarding part of your career?
The most rewarding part of my career is looking at the glimpse of hope, relief and smile I see in women with malignancies who come for follow up visits after they have undergone surgery.  

What is the most beneficial resource or equipment you have access to at your training site?
As opposed to many African countries, the institution that I am working at is equipped with radiotherapy machines 

What is one of the biggest challenges in gyn cancer care in your region? What resources are lacking?
The biggest challenge in gyn oncology care is resource limitation (both human and material). Currently, there are only few centers that provide comprehensive gyn oncology care hence why the waiting time for surgery is long. The other challenge is late presentation with an advanced disease making the options of therapy limited and chance for survival guarded. As there is only one radiotherapy center for a population of more than 110 million people the waiting time for radiotherapy is unimaginable. Scarcity of chemotherapeutic agents, particularly, the second line and the new generation drugs is also a big challenge.  

How long have you been a member and how did you become involved with IGCS?
have been enrolled in the IGCS fellowship program since 2018. This was possible through my international mentors, Dr. Rahel Ghebre (Gyn oncologist from University of Minnesota) and Dr. Carolyn Johnson (Gyn oncologist from University of Michigan). 

What does being a part of the IGCS Global Curriculum & Mentorship Program mean to you?
Being part of the IGCS Global Curriculum & Mentorship Program allowme to be mentored by gyn oncologists with years of experience in the field. In addition, being member gives me access to different online resources. Generally, the care of women with gynecologic malignancies need a multidisciplinary approach. The monthly ECHO Tumor Boards the program offers bring experts in the field from across the world together and continues to be a very important platform to discuss management of challenging cases. Finally, I am honored to be an IGCS fellow.  

What is a unique or fun fact about your country or community culture?
Some unique facts about Ethiopia:
1. Has its own letters
2. Ethiopia has 13 months in a year and the last month (the 13th month) only has 5 or 6 days. According to the Ethiopian calendarthe year we are in is 2012.
3. There are more than 80 ethnic groups with as many languages
4. Home of ‘Lucy’ a 3.5-million-year-old fossil
5. One of the only nations in Africa that has not been colonized  

Does your country/region have a traditional food or drink? Do you like it?
My favorite Ethiopian food is ‘DORO WET’ which is chicken stew that is paired best with ‘Injera’ (a staple Ethiopian dish made from a grain called ‘teff’). 

See more Member Spotlights.

Would you like to be featured in the Member Spotlight? We’d love to hear your story! Complete this form.

Fellows and Mentors in the IGCS Global Curriculum & Mentorship Program should complete this form which includes additional prompts about the program.

IGCS-AAGL Surgical Film Festival

IGCS in partnership with AAGL is providing a free online surgical film festival narrated by expert surgeons in the field of gynecologic oncology. Attendees can participate in live discussion while viewing the surgical films.

State-of-the-Art Surgical Film Festival: Complications
Wednesday, July 29, 2020

5:00 pm – 7:00 pm CDT

Ureteral & Bladder Complications (AAGL)
Bladder Injury and Repair & Post-operative Management
60 minutes


Dr. Suketu Mansuria
University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine; Magee Women’s Hospital 


Intra-Op Repair, Repair of Delayed Injury, and Post-operative Management

Dr. Ted Lee
University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine; Magee Women’s Hospital 


Dr. Erin Carey
University of North Carolina

Intra-Op Repair vs. Delayed Diagnoses, Reimplantation vs. Reanastamosis, Post-Op Management

Dr. Javier Magrina
Mayo Clinic


Dr. Jim Robinson
MedStar Washington Hospital Center


Bowel & Vascular Complications (IGCS)
60 minutes


Dr. Vance Broach
Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center


Vascular Injury & Repair, External Iliac Vessel

Dr. Mario Leitao
Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center


Vascular Injury & Repair, Inferior Vena Cava

Dr. Jamie Bakkum Gamez
Mayo Clinic


Managing Thermal Injury to Bowel

Dr. Jennifer Mueller
Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center


Management of Anastomotic Leak

Dr. Bill Cliby
Mayo Clinic




IGCS COVID-19 Survey Results

We would like to thank our members for taking the time to complete our international survey of gynecologic cancer care providers to help us better understand the global impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on cancer care in the initial months of the pandemic. An executive summary of the results is now available.

Download: IGCS Survey on the Impact of COVID-19 on Gynecologic Cancer Care Executive Summary July 2020

We received responses from a total of 270 participants from 62 countries, with representation largely from North America, South America, and Asia. 83% were gynecologic oncologists and the rest included medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, pathologists, and nurses. The primary practice of 97% of participants is in clinical work and 91% work in an urban setting. 70% work in academic medical centers while 26% work in community hospitals.

From the survey responses, we learned that there is a definite and urgent need for the IGCS to comprehensively evaluate and understand the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on gynecologic cancer practice and women’s cancer care. This understanding goes to the raison d’être of the Society in supporting its membership through education, advocacy, and political activism for women living with cancer all over the world. If you are interested in informational resources IGCS has compiled related to cancer care and COVID-19, please visit our COVID-19 page for resources, articles and recordings of educational tumor boards.

I would also like to thank Dr. Joseph Ng, IGCS Council Member and Chair of the Mentorship and Training Committee for his work in developing the survey questions and Dr. Li Min Lim for analyzing and compiling the executive summary.

The IGCS will be diving deeper and into some of the comments and responses you have provided. We intend to share what we find on these deep dives across our entire suite of information-distribution platforms including social media and in our society journal, the International Journal of Gynecological Cancer.

IGCS 2020 Abstract Graders

Abstract and Surgical Film Submission for the IGCS 2020 Annual Global Meeting closed on July 15, 2020 at 11:59 pm PDT. We are grateful to have received over 500 abstracts and acknowledge our volunteer graders for their time reviewing and grading all of the abstracts in our expedited timeline.

IGCS 2020 Abstract Graders

Angeles Alvarez Secord, USA
Annika Auranen, Finland
Line Bjorge, Norway
Donal Brennan, Ireland
Al Covens, Canada
Carien Creutzberg, Netherlands
Greta Dreyer, South Africa
Andreas du Bois,  Germany
Keiichi Fujiwara, Japan
Thomas Herzog, USA

Anuja Jhingran, USA
Rainer Kimmig, Germany
Brad Monk, USA
Sara Nasser, Germany
Farr Nezhat, USA
Remi Nout, Netherlands
Andreas Obermair, Australia
Marie Plante, Canada
Francesco Plotti, Italy

Matt Powell, USA
Eric Pujade Lauraine, France
Isabelle Ray-Coquard, France
Ritu Salani, USA
Giovanni Scambia, Italy
Jalid Sehouli, Germany
Alexey Shevchuk, Russia
Alejandro Soderini, Argentina
David Tan, Singapore

Late Breaking Abstracts
Late breaking abstracts (LBAs) will be accepted from July 25-August 15. LBAs should contain new information that was not available at the time of the general abstract deadline.
Learn more about abstract submission.

Learn more about the innovative xDigital platform by viewing this video demo.