'What's next?' is a question that enters the minds of many cancer survivors. After treatment, as life begins to reorder itself and adjust into what policy makers now
consider a chronic condition, survivors need to stay informed and become empowered self-advocates making daily conscientious choices to ensure quality-of-life. This national movement, commonly referred to as cancer survivorship, is gaining increased momentum every year.
Steps for Living (SFL), a nonprofit advocacy group spawned by this recent social change, has released 'Both Sides of the Coin', an 18-track benefit CD for cancer survivors and their loved ones. The album is raising public awareness about the realities of cancer survivorship, specifically, the relationship that doctor and patient share before and after treatment. This first-ever compilation features songs composed from two perspectives by accomplished recording artists Dr. Adam Dachman and Matthew Zachary, a cancer surgeon and survivor, respectively.
"This campaign makes a powerful artistic statement," says Dr. Adam Dachman, SFL chairman, board-certified osteopathic surgical oncologist and Chief of Surgery at Upland Hills Medical Center near Madison, Wisconsin. "Cancer as a chronic condition is changing the public's perception of the disease. Oncology professionals must recognize that enduring relationships with their patients are now part of the equation when it comes to quality care."
This link is critical because the notion of 'remission' cannot be correlated with a 'cure.' Survivors face numerous physical, psychological, social, spiritual, and financial issues at diagnosis, during treatment, and for the remaining years of their lives.
"Remission is not a cure," says SFL founder Matthew Zachary-a 10-year survivor of pediatric brain cancer. "There are consequences for 'surviving' cancer long after the doctor says, 'You're cured. Go home.'. Survivorship is an art on both sides of the coin. Advocating this message through the metaphor of music is what SFL and the [Both Sides] campaign is all about."
SFL produced the [Both Sides] CD with 100% of the proceeds from all album sales directly benefiting the foundation and it's survivorship programming.