Every cancer journey is unique. Yours is no exception. We believe that only you can know what is best for you. CancerChoices is here, as a balanced expert resource, to help you connect with integrative cancer care information and options that align with your journey and what matters most to you.

Michael Lerner Co-founder of CancerChoices and author of Choices in Healing

CancerChoices is here to help you make the best choices possible as your guide to integrativein cancer care, a patient-centered approach combining the best of conventional care, self care and evidence-informed complementary care in an integrated plan cancer care. We offer balanced views of conventionalthe cancer care offered by conventionally trained physicians and most hospitals; examples are chemotherapy, surgery, and radiotherapy, selflifestyle actions and behaviors that may impact cancer outcomes; examples include eating health-promoting foods, limiting alcohol, increasing physical activity, and managing stress, and complementaryin cancer care, complementary care involves the use of therapies intended to enhance or add to standard conventional treatments; examples include supplements, mind-body approaches such as yoga or psychosocial therapy, and acupuncture cancer care. We curate the best available evidence on complementary cancer therapies. And you will find inspiring stories of healing from those who have walked this path before you. We are a unique resource for you at any point in your cancer journey. 

CancerChoices is a program of Commonweal, a nonprofit institute in Bolinas, California. Commonweal’s long involvement in cancer wellness programs has included these, which are close partners to CancerChoices:

Commonweal

Founded in 1976, Commonweal has over 30 programs in health and healing, education and the arts, and environment and justice.

Commonweal

Commonweal Cancer Help Programs

The week-long Cancer Help Programs have been at the heart of Commonweal’s work since 1986. Retreats are limited to eight participants. The Sanctuary program brought the Cancer Help Program online during Covid and will continue alongside the Cancer Help Program in years to come.

Commonweal Cancer Help Programs

Healing Circles Global

Healing Circles Global grew out of the Cancer Help Program and is offering training in circle work for circle leaders. Healing Circles offers circles for people with cancer at no cost.

Healing Circles Global

Our mission

Our mission is to reduce suffering and support healing and resilience among people with cancer.

We seek to expand interest in and access to quality cancer care that integrates conventional care, self care, and complementary care. And we contribute to raising the status and legitimacy of integrative cancer care among medical professionals and people affected by cancer.

Our approach

We create a healing space for people to come together to learn about hope, community, healing, and new priorities in life within the context of cancer. 

We describe the landscape of cancer care and the wide variety of options that can be integrated to promote healing. 

We evaluate and summarize evidence to help people assess their cancer care options to skillfully integrate self care and complementary care with conventional cancer care.

Grounded in a balanced approach, we do not recommend or endorse therapies or practitioners. At CancerChoices, we’re not promoting anything except informed choice—something we believe every person with cancer deserves to have. 

Our staff have no financial conflicts of interest to declare. We receive no funds from any manufacturers, retailers, practitioners, or other entities promoting or discouraging therapies mentioned on this site.

What is integrative cancer care?

Integrative cancer care combines conventional, complementary, and/or self care in treating your cancer and your health overall. Complementary therapies can include natural products, herbs, mind-body approaches, off-label drugs, body manipulation approaches, and more. Self care includes lifestyle changes, such as the 7 Healing Practices.

Complementary and self care may help you with side effects during conventional treatment, improve your quality of life, delay or prevent recurrence, and/or potentially extend your life. In an integrative approach, you and your cancer treatment team work together to find the best blend of conventional, complementary, and self-care therapies and approaches for your needs. Learn more in What is Integrative Cancer Care.

Learn more

Commonweal and
CancerChoices history

Commonweal cancer-related programs

Our staff

Get to know the dedicated and experienced team behind CancerChoices.

Meet our staff

Michael Lerner

Co-founder
Michael Lerner is president and co-founder of Commonweal, the parent organization of CancerChoices. He is co-founder of the Commonweal Cancer Help Program, Healing Circles, The New School at Commonweal, and CancerChoices.
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Miki Scheidel

Co-founder and creative director
Miki Scheidel is co-founder and creative director of CancerChoices. She led the effort to transform Beyond Conventional Cancer Therapies, the prior version of CancerChoices, to its current form.
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Laura Pole, RN, MSN, OCNS

Senior clinical consultant
Laura Pole is an oncology clinical nurse specialist who has been providing integrative oncology clinical care, navigation, consultation, and education services for over 40 years.
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Nancy Hepp, MS

Lead researcher and program manager
Nancy Hepp serves as CancerChoices program manager while also researching, writing, and reviewing CancerChoices site content and overseeing technology issues.
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Andrew Jackson, ND

Research associate
Andrew Jackson, ND, teaches future naturopathic physicians the skills to read and evaluate biomedical literature for potential error or bias, assess whether results are meaningful, and apply the literature to their practices.
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Maria Williams

Research and communications consultant
Maria Williams is a research and communications consultant who brings over 15 years’ experience in research, consumer education, and science communication to CancerChoices.
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Emily Ryan, ND, MSOM, LAc

Community outreach specialist
A community outreach specialist for CancerChoices, Dr. Ryan is a licensed and board certified naturopathic physician and acupuncturist in Oregon.
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Volunteer staff

Lindsay McDonell

Volunteer guide and staff
Lindsay McDonell is a speaker, sought-after cancer coach, and celebrated author.
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Past contributors

Ruth Hennig

BCCT senior staff
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Petra Martin

BCCT design specialist
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Whitney You, MD

Research consultant
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Judi Hoffman

Volunteer copyeditor
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In memoriam

Kozo Hattori

BCCT Research associate
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