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$2 Million Grant To Benefit Doernbecher Cancer Center Expansion

   Portland, Ore.

"Challenge" grant to double impact of additional charitable gifts

The Doernbecher Children's Hospital Foundation today announced a $2 million challenge grant made by the Roseburg, Ore.-based Ford Family Foundation to support expansion of the Kenneth W. Ford Northwest Children's Cancer Center at Doernbecher Children's Hospital. The grant is the lead gift in the hospital's $13.5 million fund-raising effort to expand its pediatric cancer facilities.

The grant challenges community members to step forward with additional support for the cancer center. To secure the gift, an additional $2 million must be raised from community contributors by June 15, 2004. Gifts made by the end of February will be matched immediately by the Ford Family Foundation.

"In real terms, it means that gifts made to Doernbecher during the match period will have a double impact," said Susan Nicol, executive director of the Doernbecher Foundation. "We are thrilled by the opportunity represented by this gift because there's such a special urgency to expand Doernbecher's cancer care facilities."

Currently Doernbecher physicians care for more than 80 percent of children with cancer from Oregon and southwest Washington, and the hospital is the region's sole provider of pediatric bone marrow and stem cell transplants. This year alone approximately 200 children newly diagnosed with cancer will be referred to Doernbecher, a four-fold increase in six years. Outpatient visits have risen from 2,500 to 9,000 annually, and the average daily inpatient census has more than doubled. Growth is expected to continue through 2010.

"There is an increasing need for beds for children with cancer," said F. Leonard Johnson, M.D., professor and interim chairman of the Department of Pediatrics, OHSU School of Medicine and physician-in-chief of Doernbecher Children's Hospital "As the population grows, as well as our stem cell transplantation and brain tumor therapy programs, we must expand if we are to continue to meet the needs of our region."

The expansion will include a new 22-bed cancer inpatient unit, an infusion center for chemotherapy treatments, an enlarged cancer outpatient clinic and four new pediatric intensive care rooms.

The Ford Family Foundation is a long-time supporter of Doernbecher Children's Hospital. A major gift from the foundation helped establish the Kenneth W. Ford Northwest Children's Cancer Center in the mid 1990s.

Expansion of the Kenneth W. Ford Northwest Children's Cancer Center is a key priority of the ongoing fund-raising campaign for Doernbecher's future. For more information on giving opportunities, contact Lyn Trainer, Doernbecher Foundation, at 503 220-8342 or e-mail You may also make a gift online at

With nationally recognized programs in pediatric heart surgery, neurosurgery and cancer, Doernbecher Children's Hospital provides primary and specialized care to nearly 40,000 patients each year from Oregon, southwest Washington and beyond. As part of Oregon Health & Science University, the state's only academic health and research institution, Doernbecher combines healing, teaching, discovery and outreach in its mission to improve the health of all children.

Doernbecher's Kenneth W. Ford Northwest Children's Cancer Center Expansion Project - Fact Sheet

  • Physician and scientists at Doernbecher Children's Hospital care for more than 80 percent of the children who are battling cancer in Oregon. During the last four years, clinic visits rose from 2,500 annually to more than 9,000, the average daily census in the inpatient unit has increased from nine to 20, and this year 200 new children with cancer will be referred to Doernbecher.
  • An expansion would allow the staff to provide care to 30 to 40 percent more children who need surgery, 70 percent more who need chemotherapy infusion treatment and 40 percent more visits to the clinic.
  • Doernbecher houses the region's first and only Comprehensive Pediatric Brain Tumor Program. The program combines the talents of a neurosurgeon, neuro-oncologist , nurse practitioner, radiation oncologist, physical therapist and psychologist all on one team in one clinic visit.
  • Doernbecher is the only hospital in Oregon that performs pediatric stem cell and bone marrow transplants. Stem cell transplants are expected to rise from 22 to 40 this year.
  • Doernbecher recently became one of only 21 Phase I Institutions in the United States funded by the National Cancer Institute to test new pediatric cancer treatments. It was the first hospital in the world to study pediatric applications of Gleevec, a new leukemia-fighting pill developed at OHSU.
  • Construction is expected to begin in the fall of 2003 on a new 22-bed inpatient unit, 12 outpatient infusion beds, an expansion of the eight- examination room outpatient clinic and a new school room. The current 16-bed inpatient cancer unit will provide additional beds when needed, for a total of 38 available beds.
  • The Doernbecher Foundation hopes to raise $13.5 million through community support to help fund the first phase of the cancer center expansion, along with an addition of pediatric intensive care rooms.

  • Doernbecher is the region's only hospital with specialists in every major area of pediatric care. Last year, close to 40,000 children from Oregon, Southwest Washington and surrounding states made more than 145,000 visits to the hospital and clinics.
  • Doernbecher is a major referral center for cancer, heart disease, cardiac surgery, diabetes, kidney disease, neonatal and pediatric intensive care, metabolic disorders, organ and stem cell transplantation and trauma.

To donate to the Doernbecher Children's Hospital cancer expansion, call 503 220-8342 or toll free at 800 800-9583; or visit the Doernbecher Children's Hospital Foundation on the Web at

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