The LCRP and National Cancer Institute extend relationship
Since 2007 the program has brought the latest cancer treatment to the Savannah region and patients have followed. There has been a 40 percent increase in new cancer patients since the start.
July 18, 2012
Savannah, Ga. – The Nancy N. and J.C. Lewis Cancer & Research Pavilion and the National Cancer Institute will extend their relationship to bring the latest cancer treatment and research to the region.
The National Cancer Institute (NCI), part of the National Institutes of Health, selected the Lewis Cancer & Research Pavilion (LCRP) to continue to participate in its national network of community cancer centers for two more years. The LCRP has been a member of the NCI Community Cancer Centers Program (NCCCP) since the program’s inception in 2007 and was awarded $796,000 to fund participation in the NCCCP network for the program’s next two years. This feat has only been accomplished by a handful of cancer programs nationwide.
“Our participation in the NCCCP has been a benefit to cancer patients in Savannah and the region as well as patients from across the country who have come here for treatment,” said SJ/C President & CEO Paul P. Hinchey. “It has not only allowed us to be on the cutting edge of treatments, strategies and clinical trials but it has allowed our patients to stay near their families and support systems during treatment instead of having to travel to distant centers.”
The NCCCP is a collaborative network of community hospitals working to expand cancer research, enhance access to cancer care, and improve the quality of care for cancer patients served by community hospitals in urban, suburban and rural areas, with an emphasis on underserved populations. The majority of U.S. cancer patients are diagnosed with and treated for the disease in their local communities, where they can remain closer to home rather than commute to major academic medical centers. The NCCCP network has served approximately 53,000 new cancer cases each year.
Since 2007 the LCRP has seen a 40 percent increase in new cancer patients, which LCRP Medical Director Howard A. Zaren, M.D., attributes to the partnership with the NCI.
“With the help of the NCCCP, the Lewis Cancer & Research Pavilion has truly become a destination for cancer care,” Zaren said, who serves as Principal Investigator for the NCCCP. “Physicians in Savannah and around the region know they can refer their patients here for the latest treatments and the patients want to come here for all their treatment under one roof.”
The Lewis Cancer & Research Pavilion was one of the original sites when the NCCCP launched in 2007 as a pilot program comprised of 16 community hospitals. In 2010 the NCCCP added 14 additional sites to the network in 2010. Funding available from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act allowed the 30 NCCCP hospitals to recently compete for a program extension; 21 of them were awarded funds to continue program participation. The Lewis Cancer & Research Pavilion’s selection ensures that the NCCCP network’s ongoing efforts to offer state-of-the-art coordinated care and to create research opportunities will continue to be addressed in the Savannah region and Low Country.
The LCRP has made significant advancements in treatment since then. Some of the accomplishments under the NCCCP include:
• Implemented a nurse navigation program that gives women with suspicious mammograms results in less than a week. The Institute of Medicine’s benchmark is 14 days.
• Expanded multi-disciplinary clinics, where physicians from different specialties meet to determine a comprehensive treatment for a patient. The LCPR has doubled the Commission on Cancer’s standard for number of patients put in multi-disciplinary clinics.
• Screened 5,611 patients for cancer at St. Joseph’s/Candler’s free clinics in the last 27 months. In the previous three years it was 1,454.
• Expanded participation in clinical trials. More than 10 percent of newly diagnosed cancer patients at the LCRP are in a clinical trial. The national rate is less than 5 percent.
• Developed a system to put patients on early phase clinical trials. In the past two years the LCRP has opened 10 phase I and II clinical trials.
With a major focus on reducing cancer healthcare disparities, the 21 NCCCP community hospitals will continue efforts to enhance patient access to the latest, evidence-based cancer care, improve the overall quality of care, and expand research opportunities across the cancer continuum. The LCRP’s continued participation in the program helps to support NCI’s overall mission of accelerating cancer research and improving outcomes for cancer patients across the U.S.
The complete list of NCCCP community hospitals, as of July 2012:
Community Hospitals (Those in bold were the original pilot group awarded in 2007)
• Billings Clinic, Billings, Montana (Billings Clinic Cancer Center)
• Christiana Care Health System, Newark, Delaware (Helen F. Graham Cancer Center at Christiana Care)
• Einstein Medical Center, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (Einstein Cancer Center)
• Geisinger Medical Center, Danville, Pennsylvania (Geisinger Cancer Institute)
• Gundersen Lutheran Medical Center, La Crosse, Wisconsin (Gundersen Lutheran Center for Cancer & Blood Disorders)
• Hartford Hospital, Hartford, Connecticut (Helen & Harry Gray Cancer Center)
• Lehigh Valley Hospital, Allentown, Pennsylvania (John and Dorothy Morgan Cancer Center)
• Mercy Medical Center, Des Moines, Iowa (Mercy Cancer Center)
• Northside Hospital, Atlanta, Georgia (The Northside Hospital Cancer Institute)
• Norton Suburban Hospital, Louisville, Kentucky (Norton Cancer Institute)
• Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center, Baton Rouge, Louisiana (Cancer Program of Our Lady of the Lake and Mary Bird Perkins)
• The Queen’s Medical Center, Honolulu, Hawaii (The Queen’s Cancer Center)
• Saint Mary’s Health Care, Grand Rapids, Michigan (Lacks Cancer Center)
• Sanford USD Medical Center, Sioux Falls, South Dakota (Sanford Cancer Center)
• Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System, Spartanburg, South Carolina (Gibbs Regional Cancer Center)
• St. Joseph’s/Candler, Savannah, Georgia (Nancy N. and J.C. Lewis Cancer and Research Pavilion)
• St. Joseph Hospital, Orange, California (The Center for Cancer Prevention and Treatment)
• Catholic Health Initiatives, Denver, Colorado, for the following hospitals: Penrose – St. Francis Health Services, Colorado Springs, Colorado (Penrose Cancer Center)
• A coordinated regional program in Nebraska:
• Good Samaritan Hospital, Kearney, NE (Good Samaritan Cancer Center)
• St. Elizabeth Regional Medical Center, Lincoln, NE (St. Elizabeth Cancer Center)
• St. Francis Medical Center, Grand Island, NE (St. Francis Cancer Treatment Center)
For more information about the NCCCP network, visit www.cancerpavilion.org or ncccp.cancer.gov.
Scott M. Larson
Public Relations Manager