What We Do

Many departments within the American Cancer Society (ACS) design programs and interventions to help us achieve our overall mission to save lives, celebrate lives, and lead the fight for a world without cancer.

For instance, the ACS has developed and implemented programs to help increase cancer screening, tobacco cessation, HPV vaccination, and health equity, as well as many other programs.

The programs may be targeted to the general population, cancer survivors, health care providers and systems, communities, or others. They are also implemented in many formats, including online interventions and information, newsletters, webinars, workshops, roundtables, and more.   

As part of the Population Science Department, the Evaluation team helps guide ACS staff and collaborators in the initial design and implementation of these programs, and after the programs are up and running, we evaluate the programs’ success in achieving our ACS mission. 

To do this, we collect qualitative and quantitative data about the program from a variety of sources, including performance metrics, quality improvement plans, surveys, interviews, and focus groups with key stakeholders, such as health care providers and administrators. 

We use this data to evaluate the effectiveness of current ACS cancer control programs and behavioral interventions and to make recommendations for improving future programs.

For example, our Evaluation Team has helped:

  • Identify crucial factors for implementing evidence-based behavioral interventions in real-world health care systems.
  • Improve data collection and reporting processes.
  • Streamline ACS's communication with health systems and regional partners.

Key Terms

  • Evaluation: Approaches and techniques used to make judgments about the effectiveness of a program to inform decisions about its design, implementation, and sustainability.
  • Implementation Science: Scientific study of the best ways to integrate evidence-based research into real-world practice—by doctors, patient educators, and health policy makers, for example. One goal of implementation science is to make evidence-based interventions and programs easy to use and efficient. Finding the best strategies and methods for that may involve evaluating training tools, staffing, and process.
  • Public Health Intervention: Programs designed to improve the health of a population. For example, interventions may use tactics at the individual, community, and system level to improve the number of people who get screened for cancer and get HPV vaccinations.