The Commission on Cancer (CoC) of the American College of Surgeons (ACoS) has granted Three-Year Accreditation with Commendation to the cancer program at Riverside Middle Peninsula on the campus of Riverside Walter Reed Hospital in Gloucester court house. They are one of 75 Cancer Care facilities nationwide to receive the C0C's National Achievement Award for 2014.
To earn voluntary CoC accreditation, a cancer program must meet or exceed 34 CoC quality care standards, be evaluated every three years through a survey process, and maintain levels of excellence in the delivery of comprehensive patient-centered care. Three-Year Accreditation with Commendation is only awarded to a facility that exceeds standard requirements at the time of its triennial survey.
The purpose of the National Achievement Award is to raise the bar on quality cancer care, with the ultimate goal of increasing awareness about quality care choices among cancer patients and their loved ones. In addition, the award is intended to:
Recognize those cancer programs that achieve excellence in providing quality care to cancer patients.
Motivate other cancer programs to work toward improving their level of care.
Facilitate dialogue between award recipients and health care professionals at other cancer facilities for the purpose of sharing best practices.
Encourage honorees to serve as quality-care resources to other cancer programs.
"More and more, we're finding that patients and their families want to know how the health care institutions in their communities compare with one another," said Daniel P. McKellar, MD, FACS, Chair of the CoC. "They want access to information in terms of who's providing the best quality of care, and they want to know about overall patient outcomes. Through this recognition program, I'd like to think we're playing a small, but vital role, in helping them make informed decisions on their cancer care."
Because it is a CoC-accredited cancer center, Riverside's Middle Peninsula Cancer Center takes a multidisciplinary approach to treating cancer as a complex group of diseases that requires consultation among surgeons, medical and radiation oncologists, diagnostic radiologists, pathologists, and other cancer specialists. This multidisciplinary partnership results in improved patient care.
"It is a rigorous process to get accredited by the Commission on Cancer and is a great honor for the Middle Peninsula Cancer Center to achieve this distinction with Commendation," says Magi Khalil, MD, PhD, a medical oncologist at Riverside Middle Peninsula Cancer Center. "This is a testament to the high quality, personalized cancer care that is available to patients on the Middle Peninsula. Everyone at the cancer center is very proud of this accomplishment."
The CoC Accreditation Program provides the framework for the Middle Peninsula Center to improve its quality of patient care through various cancer-related programs that focus on the full spectrum of cancer care including prevention, early diagnosis, cancer staging, optimal treatment, rehabilitation, life-long follow-up for recurrent disease, and end-of-life care. When patients receive care at a CoC facility, they also have access to information on clinical trials and new treatments, genetic counseling, and patient centered services including psycho-social support, a patient navigation process, and a survivorship care plan that documents the care each patient receives and seeks to improve cancer survivors' quality of life.
Like all CoC-accredited facilities, Riverside's Middle Peninsula Cancer Center maintains a cancer registry and contributes data to the National Cancer Data Base (NCDB), a joint program of the CoC and American Cancer Society (ACS). This nationwide oncology outcomes database is the largest clinical disease registry in the world. Data on all types of cancer are tracked and analyzed through the NCDB and used to explore trends in cancer care. CoC-accredited cancer centers, in turn, have access to information derived from this type of data analysis, which is used to create national, regional, and state benchmark reports. These reports help CoC facilities with their quality improvement efforts.
The 75 award-winning, cancer-care programs represent approximately 15 percent of programs surveyed by the CoC in 2014. "These 75 cancer programs currently represent the best of the best—so to speak—when it comes to cancer care," added Dr. McKellar. "Each of these facilities is not just meeting nationally recognized standards for the delivery of quality cancer care, they are exceeding them."
CoC-accredited facilities diagnose and/or treat more than 70 percent of all newly diagnosed cancer patients. When cancer patients choose to seek care locally at a CoC-accredited cancer center, they are gaining access to comprehensive, state-of-the-art cancer care close to home. The CoC provides the public with information on the resources, services, and cancer treatment experience for each CoC-accredited cancer program through the CoC Hospital Locator at http://www.facs.org/cancerprogram/index.html.
Published: April 2, 2015