Kellie Garland, CTR serves as Project Director for the Oncology Services Division of Registry Partners Incorporated. Kellie is tasked with overseeing and directing state incidence reporting projects, focusing her efforts on new project implementation as well as mentoring existing and new state incidence reporting project managers and project specialists. She presently resides in Franklin, PA and has a daughter, Meagan, a son, Nathaniel, and three grandchildren.
Garland began working for Registry Partners in 2008, as a Certified Tumor Registrar where she has specialized in state incidence reporting and accredited cancer program projects. She was promoted to Project Manager in April 2009, focusing on managing state incidence reporting projects and project support staff.
Prior to joining Registry Partners, Garland received her Associates Degree in Business Science from Robert Morris University in Coraopolis, PA and earned her national certification as a Certified Tumor Registrar (CTR), in 2005. She began her career in the Oncology field in 1997 where she worked in the cancer registry at UPMC Northwest Medical Center in Seneca, PA until 2005 when she accepted a position as data abstractor for Watson Clinic & Center for Cancer Care & Research in Lakeland, FL, and then on to Potomac Hospital in Woodbridge, VA until 2008. Garland is a member of the National Cancer Registrars Association (NCRA) and the Florida Cancer Registrars Association.
Q&A with Kellie:
Q: How did you become aware of the cancer registry profession? And how did you prepare for the CTR?
A: I became aware of the cancer registry profession by ‘chance’. I had experience in the medical field…. first as a Unit Secretary in the Telemetry/ICU Units and then as the Secretary to the Director of Medical Records/Correspondence Secretary before resigning at the facility due to relocation to Virginia. When I returned to Pennsylvania I wanted to ‘get my foot in the door’ again at that same facility and applied for a part-time position in the Cancer Registry Department and was hired and worked there for 7+ years until I accepted a position in Florida with the Watson Clinic in the Cancer Registry Department. I prepared for the CTR Exam by going to the library 2-3 times per week after work and studying the Professional Review for Cancer Registrars Manual.
Q: What are some qualities you feel are necessary for someone to be a successful cancer registrar?
A: Some of the qualities necessary to become a successful cancer registrar would be the thorough knowledge of the human anatomy, medical terminology and an excellent understanding of how cancer is staged.
Q: What do you feel is a difficult aspect of the world of cancer registry!?
A: Nationwide, there is such a shortage of Cancer Registrars, that at times, many of us feel overwhelmed with the volume of tasks that must be completed by ourselves and/or others prior to meeting State deadlines, etc.