Rick Davis

Patient Advocate and founder AnCan

Rick Davis is a serial social entrepreneur with a background in finance and real estate and educated at Universities of Manchester (UK) and Chicago. He was diagnosed with locally advanced prostate cancer in 2007. It was readily apparent there was inadequate support for men placed on hormone therapy, and Rick started to advocate to remedy that. He also participated in prostate cancer support groups and recognized not only their value, but also that availability was geographically, physically and socially limited. Remote virtual support groups appeared to resolve many of those constraints.That started him down a path that has led to becoming a nationally recognized patient advocate.

At the same time, Rick was also working on integrating exercise in treatment protocols. When diagnosed Rick had found little support for exercise at either of his treating institutions, Kaiser Permanente or UCSF. A lifelong endurance athlete, he was intimidated facing more than 2 years of depleted testosterone on hormone therapy. Rick also realized that if he was struggling as an ‘addicted’ exerciser, what about those diagnosed who had never exercised before. Working with his treating doctors at UCSF, they initiated a highly successful exercise support system. MedaFit is the effort to extend that program.

In 2016 Davis and two others incorporated Answer Cancer Foundation d/b/a AnCanas a 501c3 to formalize their advocacy, navigation, education and support efforts. Originally proven in prostate cancer, AnCan has now expanded to 11 conditions hosting (soon to be) 30 monthly video chat support groups and occasional webinars drawing over 500 attendees. AnCan now addresses more than cancer with groups for MS, sarcoidosis and lupus. AnCan’s predecessors were the first to innovate peer-led video chat virtual support back in 2015.

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