All of us are touched by cancer, whether in our own lives or those we love. I am honored to contribute to the fight against cancer by summarizing scientific evidence to further ACS’s holistic mission to prevent cancer and support patients and families going through this difficult journey."
Rita Shiau, MPH, is an epidemiologist and evidence synthesis manager in the American Cancer Society’s (ACS) Early Cancer Detection Science group. She works with her team to systematically review, evaluate, and summarize scientific evidence to help ACS develop its cancer screening guidelines.
Shiau spent two decades as an epidemiologist at county health departments in California. To support the county’s infectious disease and tuberculosis control programs, she collected, maintained, analyzed, and summarized surveillance data. She also responded to outbreaks, evaluated interventions with community partners, and reported data in an understandable and actionable way to help clinicians and policymakers make decisions that improve the health and lives of everyone in the community.
Through that work, Shiau saw first-hand the inequities that contributed to worse health outcomes for certain populations and had the privilege of working on outreach campaigns to decrease these disparities.
She got her first taste of how impactful early detection can be from her work on a campaign to increase screening for hepatitis B, which causes liver cancer and is highly prevalent in the Asian community. She believes that it truly takes a multiplicity of voices to identify the knowledge gaps, structural and cultural factors that affect whether every population group within a community receives screening, and to empower people to seek that screening.
Shiau hopes to build on this life-changing work by bringing her public health experience to the ACS screening guidelines team so that we can reduce disparities in many types of cancers.
For a full list of Rita Shiau's publications, visit her Google Scholar page.
I grew up and still live in the beautiful and wonderfully diverse San Francisco Bay Area. In my spare time, I like to explore new places near and far with my husband and children, try out new recipes, and get crafty at my sewing machine. I also spend time supporting children with special healthcare needs and their caregivers.