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Cancer Center Earns Reaccreditation with Commendation

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Cancer Center leaders, from left: Theodore G. Gabig, Professor and Chief, Division of Medical Hematology/Oncology, and Associate Director for Adult Clinical Programs; Robert I. Parker, Professor of Pediatrics, Director of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology, and Associate Director for Clinical Trials and Pediatric Clinical Programs; Rose Cardin, Associate Director of Nursing for Psychiatry and Oncology, and Administrator for Cancer Services; and Michael Hayman, Professor, Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, and Associate Director for Cancer Research.

Stony Brook University Cancer Center received a three-year accreditation with commendation from the Commission on Cancer (CoC) of the American College of Surgeons as a Teaching Hospital Cancer Program. The accreditation follows a November 2011 site visit by the CoC.

In written comments the surveyor praised Stony Brook’s program for “strong goals with clear benchmarks for evaluation and achievement,” an “exemplary” cancer conference program, “commendable” quality of data in the cancer registry, and strong leadership in radiation treatment, oncology nursing, and the cancer registry.

“The surveyor’s comments confirm what we already know, that Stony Brook University Cancer Center is an outstanding cancer program,” said Kenneth Kaushansky, Senior Vice President of the Health Sciences and Dean of the School of Medicine. “The entire staff of the Cancer Center is to be commended on the quality of care they deliver to our patients every day, which is reflected in achieving the highest level of accreditation attainable.”

According to the ACS, approximately 80 percent of all newly diagnosed cancer patients in the United States are treated in the more than 1,500 facilities that are accredited by the CoC nationwide. Accreditation of a cancer center is granted only to those facilities that have voluntarily committed to provide the best in cancer diagnosis and treatment and is able to comply with established CoC standards.

Receiving care at a CoC-accredited cancer program hospital or facility ensures that patients will receive: quality care close to home; comprehensive care offering a range of state-of-the-art services and equipment; a team approach to coordinate the best cancer treatment options available; access to cancer-related information and education and to patient-centered services such as psychosocial distress screening and navigation; options for genetic assessment and counseling, and palliative care services; ongoing monitoring and improvement of care; assessment of treatment planning based on evidence-based national treatment guidelines; information about clinical trials and new treatment options; follow-up care at the completion of treatment; a cancer registry that collects data on cancer type, stage, and treatment results, and offers lifelong patient follow-up.

The CoC Accreditation Program encourages hospitals, treatment centers, and other facilities to improve their quality of patient care through various cancer-related programs. These programs focus on prevention, early diagnosis, pre-treatment evaluation, staging, optimal treatment, rehabilitation, surveillance for recurrent disease, support services, and end-of-life care.

Recognizing that cancer is a complex group of diseases, the CoC Cancer Program Standards promote consultation among surgeons, medical and radiation oncologists, diagnostic radiologists, pathologists, and other cancer specialists. This multidisciplinary cooperation results in improved patient care.

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