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Office of Cancer Complementary and Alternative Medicine (OCCAM)
Last Updated: 11/09/12

Frequently Asked Questions about OCCAM

What is the difference between OCCAM and NCCAM?

OCCAM is one of many offices within NCI. NCI is one of twenty-seven Institutes and Centers, which make up NIH; NCCAM is another. OCCAM is focused exclusively on CAM as it relates to the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of cancer; NCCAM's mission is to stimulate, develop, and support research on CAM across all diseases and conditions for the benefit of the public.

Does OCCAM conduct research?

OCCAM conducts research through several methods, which include surveys, focus groups, and textual analysis. At this time, OCCAM does not conduct clinical or basic research but does sponsor both types extramurally (conducted outside NIH) and intramurally (conducted at NIH).

What do Cancer Research Training Award (CRTA) fellows do at OCCAM?

OCCAM’s Cancer Research Training Award (CRTA) fellows learn about NCI CAM projects and the field of cancer CAM research through activities such as presenting reviews of research articles at journal club, coding grants, and assisting with research for office projects. They attend lectures relevant to CAM, cancer, and other topics of interests at NIH and attend scientific conferences held by non-NIH organizations. OCCAM CRTA fellows conduct literature review projects on cancer-CAM topics of interest and draft a paper on that body of literature for publication to a journal. They also have the opportunity to shadow physicians at the Pain and Palliative Care Clinic at the NIH Clinical Center, which allows them to observe the integration of CAM into clinical practice.

Where can I go to learn about job openings at OCCAM?

When OCCAM has a job opening, the position is posted at USAJobs.gov and Jobs@NIH. Please visit these Web sites to check for vacancies and to apply.

Where can I find answers to frequently asked questions on cancer CAM health information and NCI’s Best Case Series Program?

For more information on these specific topics, please visit the sections below: