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Bay Area Cancer Center first to join OHSU Knight Cancer Network

Bay Area Hospital and the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute signed a letter of intent to explore cancer prevention, cancer care and research programs to be launched in Coos Bay

Bay Area Hospital and the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute have agreed to launch the first site of the newly formed OHSU Knight Cancer Network at the Bay Area Cancer Center in Coos Bay, Oregon.

The two institutions signed a letter of intent to determine the combination of cancer prevention practices, research and cancer care programs ― offered through the OHSU Knight Cancer Network ― that will best meet the needs of the community, cancer patients and cancer survivors served by the Bay Area Cancer Center. Following the planning process, a formal agreement is expected to be developed.

“Our collaboration to bring OHSU Knight Cancer Network programs to the South Coast represents an important step forward for the health and well-being of Oregonians who live in the region. Ultimately, it means that more people will be able to get access to the care and resources they need and that will make a meaningful difference to families impacted by cancer,” said Paul Janke, president and chief executive officer, Bay Area Hospital.

Among the programs and resources to be considered as part of the planning process are:

  • Remote access to OHSU Knight Cancer Institute tumor boards in which Bay Area Cancer Center physicians would be able to seek input on treatment decisions for patients with complex or rare cancers;
  • Expanded training programs for physicians and clinical staff;
  • Tele-oncology consultation services tailored to meet some of the community’s most pressing needs;
  • Lung cancer screening;
  • Enhanced tobacco cessation programs for youth;
  • Exercise programs for cancer survivors;
  • A project to streamline coordination of care if Bay Area patients need to travel to OHSU to receive part of their treatment.

“Bay Area Cancer Center shares our vision to provide patients with a full continuum of services, from cancer prevention to survivorship. By collaborating through the OHSU Knight Cancer Network, we’re able to work together and leverage each other’s strengths to deliver that exceptional care for each patient and their family,” said Tomasz M. Beer, M.D., F.A.C.P., deputy director of the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute.

The OHSU Knight Cancer Institute announced plans for the statewide OHSU Knight Cancer Network in November 2014 after receiving $2.5 million in funding as part of a $5 million gift from the Ford Family Foundation. The network was formed to serve as a statewide cancer outreach resource to provide hospitals, physicians, oncology medical practices and other community-based health care organizations ― such as skilled nursing facilities, hospice care and home health agencies ― with access to OHSU Knight Cancer Institute experts in cancer prevention, education, diagnostics, treatment and survivorship, as well as support to expand clinical trial options for patients.

The introduction of the OHSU Knight Cancer Network in Coos Bay is the result of a longstanding collaborative relationship between the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute and Bay Area Hospital. In 2008, they formed a partnership to make it possible for Bay Area Hospital’s radiation oncologist to see patients, teach and attend multidisciplinary tumor conferences with other specialists at the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute; to ensure this time away doesn’t impact patients, an OHSU specialist visits Coos Bay at the same time. In 2014, Bay Area Hospital received a grant from the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute Community Partnership Program to establish a telemedicine program for oncology specialty care consultations.

The OHSU Knight Cancer Network agreement comes as Bay Area Hospital is expanding its cancer care offerings. In July it opened the Bay Area Cancer Center, which combines the delivery of outpatient radiation and medical oncology services ― making it possible for North Bend Medical Center physicians and Bay Area’s radiation oncologists to work under one roof. The hospital has also been accredited by the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer since 1990 and in 2004 became a Community Hospital Comprehensive Cancer Program.

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