New Mexico Action Center

Improving Cancer Patients Lives with Palliative Care A large crowd turned up for the second annual New Mexico Cancer Summit: Treating the Person Beyond the Disease. Attendees had the opportunity to learn from a wide range of speakers, and to start laying the ground work for a 2017 palliative care campaign in New Mexico.

If you or a loved one are looking for palliative care near you, please visit to find a list of providers and to learn more about whether it's right for you. Please check back for future updates regarding palliative care in New Mexico!

Below are the presentations from the day:
Palliative and Cancer Care: Like Chocolate and Peanut Butter, They're Better Together!
Presented by Esme Finlay, MD

Palliative Care in the Land of Breaking Bad: Unique Challenges and Opportunities in New Mexico
Presented by Lisa Marr, MD

What is a palliative care team and how does a team function?
Presented by Presbyterian palliative care team: Victoria Cain, LMSW, CT; Mary Catherine Casey, MDiv; Janette Kottong, CNP; Lin Sorenson, RN, MSN, CNS, APRN; Patty Wiltz, RN, MN, CHPN; Nancy Guinn, MD

The Palliative Care Program at Christus St. Viincent Santa Fe 2015
Presented by Douglas Egli, MD, FACP

Palliative Care in the Veterans Health Care System: A brief look at progress nationally and locally
Presented by April Volk, MD Advocacy and ACS CAN Presented by Sandra Adondakis, MS and Lacey Daniell,

MPA Regulations Pertaining to Pain Treatment Presented by Joanna Katzman, MD, MSPH Hospice of NM Presented
by Margaret Nolan, MD

Living the Palliative Life
Presented by Cameron Svendsen, LCSW, MSW

Regulatory & Legislative Palliative Care Initiatives at the State and Federal level
Presented by Sandra Adondakis, MS and Lacey Daniell, MPA

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Current Argus Article

Stubbornness can cost you your life.
Listening to your mom can save it.

Shannon Shaw certainly learned that lesson when after three years of refusing to listen to his mother to get a mole on his hip checked by a doctor he relented and was diagnosed with a stage four malignant melanoma. Shaw died August 2009 after a year battling his cancer at the old University of New Mexico Cancer Center.

"The new research center opened the same month Shannon died," Jeff Diamond said. That is why the proceeds of the Shannon J. Shaw Fund go toward supporting the work of UNM's new cancer center.

"It's difficult losing a child," Evy Diamond, Shaw's mother said. She has recently been diagnosed with breast cancer, so the efforts to raise awareness and prevention are very close to home. For her and Shaw's daughter, Marlee Shaw seeing the turnout of the third annual Shannon J. Shaw Fund Memorial Team Roping event at the Eddy County Sheriff's Posse arena is heartwarming.

"My dad loved his job, loved to laugh," Marlee Shaw said of her father who worked as an engineer at the Bureau of Land Management. "He would think this was awesome," she said.

The idea to create came from her father just before his death according to Marlee.

The website is the online home of the Shannon J. Shaw Memorial Fund, which partnered with local businesses and organizations to sponsor this year’s team roping event where over 70 teams were signed up Saturday. Jeff Diamond said that they expect over 300 participants, making this event one of the largest in the county. Shaw was survived by Marlee, her brother Jacob who is serving in the Marines, and her mother Christine. Just like it takes a team to bring down a steer, "It takes a team to fight cancer, “Jeff Diamond said. The Team Roping event will continue through Sunday. Winners of the event will be receiving saddles and buckles as well as cash prizes.

Jessica Onsurez may be reached at 575-491-4682.