Who We Are
We are the Fort Worth AYA Oncology Coalition, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization made up of healthcare representatives from 11 Fort Worth medical institutions and cancer support organizations and more than 100 AYA survivors and their families, advocates and passionate volunteers who are working together to improve the lives of young people, ages 15 to 39, diagnosed with cancer in our community.
Our Coalition Partners
We holds in highest regard the essence of the word, coalition. Together, through the partnership of many medical experts, patients and survivors and the involvement and investment of our community, we are working to change the trajectory of AYAs diagnosed with cancer. Our coalition is a partnership representing the following institutions:
What We Do
Our coalition works together to ensure that every adolescent and young adult (AYA) with cancer in our community has access to the specialized care, comprehensive resources and age-relevant support they need. Through our community partnerships and the generous time, talents and donations of people who share our mission, we are able to support life-enhancing AYA cancer programs that include:
Specialized AYA Cancer Care
Patient Navigation and Education
Provider Education and Awareness
Community Awareness and Education
With Your Support, we are working to provide
We’ve launched a three-year comprehensive fundraising campaign to provide funding for the development, implementation and sustained operations of the following AYA programs. Our vision is to offer these services to all AYA patients in the greater Fort Worth area.
Comprehensive Psychosocial Services
Peer to Peer Activities and Support
How we Benefit the community
Give hope to young adults who want to preserve their fertility
Provides an age-relevant medical environment for AYAs and their families
Offer specialized medical care that addresses an AYA patient’s unique biology
Promote connectivity, inclusion and peer support during every stage of an AYA’s cancer journey
Provide vital AYA education to healthcare professionals and the community at large
AYA cancer Inpatient Unit & Outpatient Infusion Center
Located at Baylor Scott & White All Saints Medical Center – Fort Worth, our six-bed AYA oncology inpatient unit and outpatient infusion center provides an age-relevant “home” to our coalition, AYAs, their families and friends. It enables coalition oncologists to provide specialized, AYA care to more patients than ever before and communicates to AYAs and their families that there’s a community ready and willing to meet their current and future medical, biological and psychosocial needs.
Our Vision & Mission
Our community collaborating to reduce the impact of cancer in the adolescent and young adult population.
We collaborate to improve the quality of life and outcomes of adolescents and young adults with cancer by: enabling the healthcare community; empowering patients and raising awareness.
MEET OUR TEAM
Karen Albritton, M.D.
Karen Albritton, M.D., is internationally recognized as an expert in AYA oncology. Board-certified in both pediatric and medical oncology, she was educated at Yale University, the University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio and the University of North Carolina. Dr. Albritton has published work in national peer-reviewed publications and is currently the medical director of AYA oncology at Cook Children’s Medical Center and Fort Worth AYA Oncology Coalition’s AYA inpatient Unit located at Baylor Scott & White All Saints Medical Center – Fort Worth.
Elena Wright, BSN, RN,
Elena has been part of our team since August 2016 and also provides services to AYAs throughout Tarrant and the five surrounding counties. As a navigator, Elena provides support, resources, and education specific to the patient’s social and medical needs. This can include addressing AYA issues such as missing work or school, fertility counseling and coordination of fertility preservation, providing support for those with young families, connecting patients to each other, and providing financial aid resources. Her connection to the patient continues after the end of treatment too, as it is widely accepted that increased adherence to established follow-up guidelines can lead to improved health outcomes. Elena’s personal experience with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) as a child ignited her passion for working with young adult cancer patients. “The experience and all those that followed at the hospital, at summer camps and even at work have made me realize it is my calling and my home to help oncology patients.”
Olivia Prebus, MSN, RN
Olivia works closely with patients aged 15 years and older who receive treatment at Cook Children’s. Her goal is to ensure that AYAs and their families are well supported and given the tools to engage fully with their oncology care. She provides education and resource referrals to optimize quality of life and patient outcomes during treatment and into survivorship. Olivia is drawn to nurse navigation because the healthcare system can be confusing for the very people it is intended to serve. Navigation services help improve the cancer care experience by reducing barriers to care, and increasing confidence within the healthcare environment. Olivia has seen the positive impact that these services can make for teens and young adults, and this is what motivates her work.
Brittany C. Hall, Ph.D.
Assistant Faculty/AYA Lead Psychologist
Dr. Hall has been with FWAYA since 2017. Dr. Hall coordinates psychological services at Moncrief Cancer Institute for AYAs, providing individual and group therapy and organizing the monthly AYA programs. Cancer often disrupts an AYA’s work on developmentally appropriate tasks such as; establishing autonomy from parents, a personal set of values and identity, strong peer relationships, intimate and sexual relationships, and obtaining adequate preparation to join the workforce. Dr. Hall works to help the AYA find a sense of normalcy by seeking to minimize the amount of disruption caused by the cancer experience and to maximize their health‐related quality of life.
Child Life Specialist
Kara has been with us since November 2017 and as a Certified Child Life Specialist she is able to provide developmentally appropriate support to AYA patients and their families. Depending on their life stages, AYAs have unique needs and Kara uses education, procedure preparation and other interventions as well as, therapeutic activities that will allow patients to navigate their individual medical journey.