Southwest Virginia Community Advisory Board

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SWVA Community Advisory Board (CAB) was formed by the UVA Cancer Center with the support of key stakeholders from the Southwest Virginia region. Over 30 representatives from Lenowisco, Cumberland Plateau, and Mount Rogers Health District now sit on the CAB to address cancer disparities and the lack of healthcare access in rural Appalachia. Cancer survivors, community members, healthcare professionals, government, and nonprofit organizations comprise the board dedicated to eliminating cancer in Southwest Virginia.

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Our 2020-2021 Impact

13 Outreach Projects

4 Published Manuscripts

12 Submitted Grants

6 Total Funded Grants 

Community Action Teams

Two Community Action Teams were formed through the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research (PCOR) skill-based training program: Cancer Prevention and Cancer Early Detection. Each action team used a multi-step process to set priorities involving a qualitative review of regional data, a causal model, community voting, and asset mapping. These action teams focus on four priorities: Lung Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Human papillomavirus (HPV), and Tobacco Cessation.

Prevention Causal Model

Cancer Early Detection


  • Lung Cancer: Provide education and strategies to reduce barriers to cancer screenings to physicians, other healthcare providers, and the public about low and no-cost lung cancer screening resources for low-income and under and uninsured populations.
  • Colorectal Cancer: Advocate for state and federal policies that improve access to health insurance and/or free or low-cost screenings for colorectal cancer.
Early Action Team Causal Model

Cancer Prevention


  • Tobacco Cessation: Increase evidence-based educational programs to discourage the use of all tobacco products and encourage the use of cessation services.
  • Human Papillomavirus (HPV): Provide education to Virginians about the effectiveness of the HPV vaccination in preventing HPV-associated cancers, provide education on HPV and HPV vaccination, and provide connections to HPV resources.

SWVA CAB Co-Chairs

Dianne Morris, Mountain Laurel Cancer Support and Resource Coordinator

Dianne Morris

Health District 1


Sarah Ramey, CCWW SWVA Co-chair

Sarah Ramey

Health District 2


Howard Chapman

Howard Chapman

Health District 3


Partners & Contributors

  • Emory & Henry College
  • Southwest Virginia Federally Qualified Health Systems
  • Tri-Area Community Health (TACH)
  • Stone Mountain Health System (SMHS)
  • Clinch River Health System
  • Virginia Department of Health
  • Scott County Public Schools
  • Southwest Virginia Community Health Systems (SVCHS)
  • Integrated Translational Health Research Institute of Virginia (iTHRIV)
  • National Institutes of Health/NCI
  • Ballad Health
  • Mountain Empire Older Citizens (MEOC)Mountain Empire Community College (MECC)
  • Dr. Headrick, MD, CHI Memorial Chest and Lung Cancer Center
  • Southwest Virginia Community Pharmacies
  • Gates Pharmacy
  • The University of Virginia’s College at Wise (UVAWISE)
  • Virginia Cooperative Extension
  • Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth (VFHY)
  • VFHY Southwest Virginia Tobacco Prevention Grantees
  • The Rapha Foundation
  • Virginia Health Catalyst

For recent meeting minutes, email