Oncology influencers share insights, perspectives at 3rd annual blogger summit


Meredith Hemler

26 June 2015

The role of the patient has evolved over time and today patients are more involved than ever in their healthcare and look to one another online for support, advice and a sense of community. AstraZeneca strives to engage with patients to ensure the latest information and support resources are available, and help determine where unmet needs remain.

Earlier this week, top oncology bloggers and online influencers gathered in Gaithersburg, Maryland for the 3rd Annual AstraZeneca Oncology Blogger Summit, which offered an opportunity to network, hear from experts about relevant topics, and share best practices for engaging with their online communities.

Speakers addressed the unmet educational needs for oncology patients and their caregivers in the social media space while providing case studies, tips and tools for bloggers to expand their audiences and amplify their content. Deborah Torgersen-Paul, Executive Medical Science Liaison at AstraZeneca, gave an in-depth overview of the evolution of science in cancer, prompting a range of questions and active discussion. This was followed by a presentation from award-winning blogger Ciaran Blemenfeld (@momfluential), which focused on strategies to build stronger connections within an online community on various platforms. Afternoon sessions were run by Dr. Sage Bolte, Director of Life with Cancer and honed in on the sources of distress among cancer patients and methods to address changes in sexuality and intimacy after a diagnosis. Summit attendees also had an opportunity to tour MedImmune oncology research labs and have their research related questions addressed.

“We were eager to bring this group of online influencers together offline at the 3rd Annual AstraZeneca Oncology Blogger Summit,” said Rich Buckley, Vice President, North America Corporate Affairs. “By bringing together these leaders to network face to face, attend seminars on best practices in social media and updates on the state of the science, and tour research labs, we hope to empower these thought leaders to speak to their audiences with a deeper and broader context. They serve an invaluable role speaking to patients and caregivers managing cancer. We’re proud to be part of this patient centered endeavor.”

AstraZeneca has been committed to oncology research and supporting those living with cancer for more than 40 years. We hope the discussion generated by this summit will help expand the lines of communication with the community to better understand and accommodate the evolving needs of patients, as well as those who are involved in their care.