PEN Intro Blog

Introduction to Patient Empowerment Network

“Educating yourself can change your prognosis, outlook, and outcome. It changed mine. Patient Empowerment Network’s resources provide empowerment and boost hope.” – Lisa Hatfield, Multiple Myeloma survivor

The best cancer care happens when you’re empowered to ask the right questions, at the right time. Yet a diagnosis can make patients and their families feel out of control. Patient Empowerment Network (PEN) is where to go for help.

Patient Empowerment Network is a virtually-based non-profit organization trusted by millions of cancer patients and care partners to achieve improved health literacy, equity, and treatment outcomes at every step of their journey.

Our programs include free webinars with leading medical experts, digital literacy skills training workshops, downloadable doctor’s visit check-lists, online courses which teach skills including how to use telemedicine, animated explainer videos, patient story vignettes, a blog, activity guides, and more. You can find an overview of our 2023 programs, here.

All of PEN’s programs are built on our Path to Empowerment framework to provide for every step of a cancer journey: From Newly Diagnosed, Testing, Treatment & Clinical Trials, Access & Affordability, Whole Patient Support, to What’s Next.

Many of our programs are specifically designed to improve health equity for BIPOC, elderly, and other underrepresented people impacted by cancer.

What differentiates Patient Empowerment Network from other cancer advocacy groups is that we take patient education a step further; we educate, then ACTIVATE patients and their care partners to become co-decision makers with their healthcare teams. By insisting on the most current and personalized care available, empowered patients achieve better treatment outcomes.

Our website annually receives nearly a half-million unique website visitors, and in 2022 our programs served more than 362,500 patients and care partners. With your support, we can help even more to achieve improved cancer treatment outcomes.

PEN operates with a $1.85M annual budget obtained primarily through corporate grants and charitable donations which allows us to offer free access to our programs which feature leading experts and doctors with specialized knowledge and give patients the opportunity to receive answers to their questions, often in real time.

We are:

  • a 501(c)(3) public charity founded in 2009 (Tax ID 27-1295230);
  • a virtual organization operating in the U.S., led and advised by high-profile patient-leaders
  • efficient in the delivery of our mission: >85% of our income is invested into programs;
  • creators of programs that address unmet cancer patient and care partner needs via a Path to Empowerment Framework; all programs include a measured and reported Call to Action
  • previous grant/sponsorship recipients from AbbVie, Astellas, BMS/Celgene, Blueprint Medicines, Daiichi Sankyo, Eisai, Exact Sciences, Exelixis, Genentech, Incyte, Jazz, Karyopharm Therapeutics, Merck, MorphoSys, Myovant Sciences, Novartis, Novocure, Pfizer, Pharmacyclics, Sanofi, SeaGen, and Takeda.

—Visit us at to learn more —