A description of the Breast Cancer Network Demonstration Projects, funded by the National Cancer Institute during the years 1974-1980. This monograph summarizes the activities and accomplishments, as well as the shortcomings, that characterized the majority of networks and highlights unique features of individual networks that reflect accommodations to particular environments and problems. Beyond breast cancer and even beyond control programs for other cancers, the material in the report is applicable to a wide variety of efforts to organize, rationalize, and improve the management of a particular disease within a geographic area. The experience of breast cancer networks affords the opportunity to examine seven related themes: (1) transfer of technology in health care; (2) voluntary cooperation among health care providers; (3) use of regional data to improve care; (4) use of a network to change professional behavior; (5) use of a network to change public or patient behavior; (6) regional variation within a single program; and (7) the merits of cancer-site-specific vs. more generalized cancer control programs.
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