Dicey Scroggins -
25 Year Ovarian Cancer Survivorship Anniversary
In honor of Gynecologic Cancer Awareness Month, we'd like to take this opportunity to highlight some of our advocacy programs and celebrate Mary "Dicey" Scroggins, the IGCS Director of Global Outreach & Engagement who celebrated her 25th ovarian cancer survivorship anniversary on September 19th.
On September 19, 2021, Dicey celebrated her 25th year surviving ovarian cancer. Many of you are well aware that Dicey is an extraordinary woman, notorious for her activism and a fervent advocate for global health equity, particularly women affected by gynecologic cancers. Dicey is also a recent survivor of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) - she is currently in recovery from a bone marrow transplant. She would like everyone to know that she is doing well and can’t wait to get back to her advocacy work. She often tells us how much she enjoys her work and even now, she is actively involved in planning the 2021 Advocacy Summit taking place in the next several weeks.
Since early 2019, Dicey has been leading IGCS’ patient advocacy and community outreach efforts as the society’s first Director of Global Outreach and Engagement. In just three short years, she has completely transformed IGCS’s advocacy programs and relationships through educational programming, network and relationship building, recognition, and communication.
She is also a writer, producer, and founding partner in Pinkie Hugs, LLC - a mother-daughter writing and film production firm specializing in social justice-focused documentaries.
She is a co-founder of In My Sister’s Care (an organization focused on improving gynecologic cancer awareness and care for medically underserved women and on eliminating health disparities), and a co-chair of the Advocacy Special Interest Group for the African Organization for Research and Training in Cancer. The recipient of the 2016 AACR Distinguished Public Service Award, Dicey is a member of NCI’s “Community Engagement in Genomics” Working Group and the Director of Advocacy and International Engagement for the “Globe-athon to End Women’s Cancers.”
Her activism is driven by a commitment to global health equity which is shared by the leadership of the IGCS. As one of the authors on the working group charged to write the IGCS Global Health Equity Statement, Dicey’s vision and passion is evident in what is now the driving force behind everything that our society stands for.
IGCS President, Dr. Robert Coleman has said that Dicey is a fountain of ideas and we have been fortunate to have her take the lead in conceptualizing and developing IGCS’s advocacy programs. She sees the big picture while having intimate knowledge of survivor-patient needs.
IGCS Advocacy Programs
The Annual Survivor-Caregiver Summit is a 4-hour virtual event that covers everything that gynecologic cancer survivors, caregivers, and advocates need to know. Experts explain the basics of gynecologic cancers and patient rights to increase literacy and empower women with knowledge. Survivorship is discussed as part of the continuum of care with a focus on quality of life. Examples of the power of patient advocacy in action are shared and attendees are encouraged to chat and join the IGCS network for continued support.
First held in May 2020, each 60- to 90-minute virtual session covers a specific topic important to gynecologic cancer patient communities maneuvering through the health and cancer care system during and after COVID-19. The roundtables include key opinion leaders and patients-caregivers.
The most recent roundtable topic was a focus on Survivorship/Quality of Life and Patient Reported Outcomes and the next roundtable to be held later this year will focus on Global Health Equity: Conversation to Implementation. The roundtables are free to the public and recordings can be viewed here.
Distinguished Advocacy Award
In 2019, IGCS instituted a new award – the Distinguished Advocacy Award. This award recognizes advocates and/or advocacy organizations that provide active, dedicated service to patients/survivors, families, and caregivers—on a local, regional, or international level—and persistently engage in the fight against gynecologic and other cancers. View the recipients and their inspiring stories.
IGCS has a vision to build a network; a noncompetitive global linkage of gynecologic cancer advocacy organizations and individual advocates—from every region and every income and resource setting—that partner and collaborate in achieving best outcomes for all gynecologic cancer patients.