2014 Cancer Liaison Physician Report, CCMC Community Comprehensive Cancer Center
At Camden Clark’s Community Comprehensive Cancer Center we strive to improve the cancer patient experience while patients are undergoing the required surgical-, chemo- or radiation therapy.
We have a team of professionals to help patients with serious illnesses.
Our Oncology Support Services Coordinator assists in removing any obstacles which prevents patients from moving through the treatment process. She also addresses the patients’ social, emotional and financial needs and facilitates their participation in the Horizons of Hope Support Group.
The Cancer Center Patient Navigator more accurately identifies barriers to care, improves sharing of resources, enhances continuity of care, improves quality and timeliness of rendering cancer services and this ultimately improves the treatment outcomes.
To better serve our patients we established the Palliative Care Team this year. By relieving symptoms including pain, shortness of breath, fatigue, and nausea, they can tolerate treatments better and are able to carry on with daily activities. The team addresses not only the physical aspects of care of these patients, but also their psychological, psychiatric, social and spiritual needs. They also address structures and processes of care (coordination of care & discussion of goals of care). I expect a direct effect of this service even in my specialty practice, because in radiation oncology, patients with advanced cancer often require palliative radiotherapy for symptom relief. Now we can get further help from the Palliative Care Team to improve the quality of life of our patients.
Our Cancer Outreach Center is supported by our local American Cancer Society office. It has a private area for wig, prosthetic, and breast cancer apparel viewing. It offers the services of a beautician, cosmetologist, and a massage therapist. It is also a resource center for outreach programs. It offers many educational materials for our cancer patients.
As part of our efforts, the Cancer Committee sponsors weekly multidisciplinary cancer conference. It helps to improve and to coordinate patient care and it is a valuable educational opportunity for community physicians, nurses and therapists. The conference is approved to offer continued medical educational credits to its participants. We not only present the top five cancer sites but also present a lot of various types of cancer. Physicians involved represent medical oncology, radiation oncology, pathology, diagnostic radiology, pulmonology, gynecology oncology, etc.
As the Liaison Physician for the American College of Surgeon, I am monitoring and evaluating the patient outcomes and I compare our survival data to the national statistics with help of our tumor registrars. I report quarterly to the cancer committee the performance of our program using the National Cancer Data Base (NCDB). In 2014 the most common newly diagnosed cancers continue to be lung (21%), breast (18%), colorectal (11%) and prostate cancer (10%).
We continue to see advanced disease presentations while we know that early diagnosis is the key to achieve the best outcomes. Therefore CCMC offers a multitude of screening services including digital mammograms, colonoscopy, PSA screening and low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) screening for lung cancer of high risk patients.
At Camden Clark’s Community Comprehensive Cancer Center we share a commitment in the “80 by 18” National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable Initiative in the belief that we can eliminate colorectal cancer as a major public health problem by increasing colorectal screening to 80% by 2018.
The cancer committee’s main focus is to continue to improve cancer care in the community and to assist CCMC in maintaining its accreditation by the American College of Surgeon.
We are proud to present to you the Cancer Center’s 2014 annual report.
Gabor Altdorfer, MD
Liaison Physician, Commission on Cancer
Camden Clark Community Comprehesnive Cancer Center