Rebecca (Becky) DeBoer, MD, MA is an Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine in the Division of Hematology/Oncology at UCSF. She received her BA in Human Biology from Stanford University and her joint MD and MA in Medical Humanities and Bioethics from Northwestern University, and wrote her master’s thesis on The Ethics of Global Cancer Care and Control. She completed residency in internal medicine at the University of Chicago and fellowship at the MacLean Center for Clinical Medical Ethics. During her medical training, she conducted qualitative research on cancer treatment decision-making and research ethics in Mumbai, India, and pursued clinical oncology rotations in Uganda and Nigeria. After residency she worked as an oncology clinician at the Butaro Cancer Center of Excellence in rural Rwanda with Partners In Health, where she was engaged in direct patient care, clinical research, and programmatic initiatives. As an oncology fellow at UCSF and HDFCCC Global Cancer Fellow, she conducted ethics research and implementation science projects in Rwanda and Tanzania with support from a Fogarty GloCal Health Fellowship and a grant from the Greenwall Foundation.
Dr. DeBoer is a medical oncologist based clinically at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital, where she has a general oncology clinic and a breast oncology clinic. She continues to work in the emerging academic field of Global Oncology as a member of the HDFCCC Global Cancer Program at UCSF. Her research examines ethical issues in oncology care and capacity-building in resource-limited settings, and leverages implementation science and mixed methods to address them. She is currently leading collaborative projects in the following areas: 1) Cross-cultural serious illness communication, including a qualitative study examining clinical decision-making about non-curative cancer therapy in Rwanda and Tanzania and a cultural adaptation of evidence-based communication skills training for the Rwandan setting; 2) Resource allocation and patient prioritization for radiotherapy in Rwanda; 3) Implementation science to enhance oncology care delivery, including clinical guideline implementation in Tanzania and clinical program evaluation of a care delivery system in Rwanda.