News | September 22, 2008

Baptist Cancer Center Receives 2008 Centers of Excellence Award

September 23, 2008 – The secret to success for Baptist Centers for Cancer Care’s Radiation Oncology Center (Baptist) is its mission – its mission to demonstrate commitment to excellence provided by caring and passionate individuals.

In honor of the Memphis, Tennessee-based center’s proven clinical leadership in its region, in technological upgrades and consistent patient care, Imaging Technology News honored Baptist with the 2008 Outpatient Care Centers of Excellence for Cancer Centers presented at ASTRO.

When the editors at Imaging Technology News magazine set up to identify the winner of the Centers of Excellence award, we surveyed our readers and advertisers, asking them what centers they believed embodied state-of-the-art technology, efficiency, teamwork and delivered excellent patient care. Many U.S. facilities were nominated and our editorial advisory and staff determined that Baptist met the highest criteria.

Neither declining reimbursement, a struggling economy nor competitive threats have clouded the center’s vision, dampened the dedication and enthusiasm of the staff or forced them to retreat to the status quo. Quite the contrary. Being an early adopter of the latest technology in radiation oncology is a key strategy for achieving its mission.

Historically, Baptist has billed itself as the first in the area to offer freestanding prostate brachytherapy with intraoperative dosimetry, three-dimensional high-dose rate brachytherapy, IMRT, IGRT, respiratory gating and linear accelerator-based stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) and stereotactic radiotherapy (SRT).

When Baptist began strategic planning to replace an older accelerator so it could offer IGRT and SRS/SRT, its clinical and support teams looked at several vendors’ equipment. It quickly became clear that the addition of a Trilogy by Varian Medical Systems would not only allow them to have an accelerator that would support their goals and objectives, but would also allow them to beam-match the machine enabling patients to transfer between the equipment as needed. Plus the Trilogy would allow the flexibility to use the machine as ‘simple’ as needed or as ‘complex’ as needed.

The decision to add the Trilogy fueled a succession of other technologies with a goal to improve efficiencies and processes with new equipment and new functionality. What began with a need to replace an older accelerator led to building a new brachytherapy suite, remodeling a treatment room and installing a Trilogy. Evaluating an EMR system emerged next on the list.

Baptist’s vision for the future includes strategic partnerships, building relationships with physicians in order to improve cancer care in their region; adding adaptive radiotherapy and fostering a supportive environment in which their team is empowered to rise the next challenge.

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