Cancer patients in the Capital Region will have more options under a new partnership announced Tuesday.
Officials gathered at Ellis Hospital to announce a new medical oncology services are coming thanks to a partnership with Buffalo-based Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center.
Ellis is creating a medical oncology/chemotherapy/infusion center at the hospital, which will expand local access to Roswell Park's services. Ellis President and CEO Paul Milton says the collaboration is unique and forward thinking.
"We're bringing all the expertise that Roswell has in clinical trials and research and the prevention work that they do and the diagnostic and treatment protocols to this region. So we're bringing the best of both worlds. We're bringing all the expertise to this region from a comprehensive cancer center like Roswell Park here locally for the patients in our community."
Dr. Thomas Schwaab is Chief of Strategy and Business Development at Roswell Park.
"This is all about teamwork. Roswell, as a National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center, has to jump through hoops every five years to document the quality of care that we claim we have and to prove the level of care, coordination and teamwork. So now Ellis will be an outstanding partner here. And then finally the last point of this is that high-quality oncology care goes together with clinical trials, and clinical trials save lives."
He added the collaboration will expand patient access to specialists as well as offer Roswell's outreach and network programs, which include community education, cancer prevention and professional education programs.
Schwaab noted the region's cancer patients would no longer have to drive four or five hours to get innovative treatment.
"Together we will elevate the level of oncology care in this region. And the way we do that is, not that we have any better doctors than, you know you guys have good doctors here, what we bring to the table is clinical innovation, clinical trials, research, and what's a very important for us, as modern oncology doctors, is very tight orchestration and collaboration in the different specialties that fit together."
When completed, the oncology services area will occupy a dedicated 6,000 square foot cancer center at Ellis. Construction is set to begin in 2021 and the center is expected to begin receiving patients in about a year.
The new oncology center will be a member site of the Roswell Park Care Network.