September 26, 2008 – ProCure announced at ASTRO that it is partnering with radiation oncology practices and hospitals to open proton therapy centers, including one at Central DuPage Hospital in Illinois to be completed by 2011.
A four to zero approval on September 17, 2008, by the Illinois Health Facilities Planning Board (IHFPB) of the Proton Therapy Center of Central DuPage Hospital confirmed the deal.
Construction on the 58,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art proton therapy treatment center in Warrenville’s Cantera development will begin immediately according to the center’s joint venture partners, Central DuPage Hospital (CDH), Radiation Oncology Consultations, Ltd. (ROCL) - Chicago’s largest radiation oncology group - and ProCure Treatment Centers, Inc., Bloomington, Ind. The center is expected to begin treating patients in early 2011.
“This is a great and promising day for cancer patients in Illinois and throughout the Midwest,” said William Hartsell, M.D., president of ROCL. “Our practice has spent more than five years trying to bring protons to Illinois so we don’t have to send our patients out of state, waiting for the few treatment slots that are available. When this facility opens, it will provide access to proton treatment for many patients in Illinois.”
Experts conservatively estimate that every year, more than 10,000 Illinois cancer patients—and 250,000 nationwide— are candidates for proton therapy. Studies have shown proton therapy to be effective in treating brain, head and neck, pediatric, colorectal and prostate tumors as well as cancers that cannot be removed completely by surgery. Research is showing promising results in the treatment of some breast and lung tumors. Proton therapy can be particularly effective in treating children, who are more sensitive to the effects of radiation than adults.
There are currently five proton therapy centers operating in the United States, providing about 6,000 treatment slots per year. Another two centers are scheduled to open in 2009, including the ProCure Proton Therapy Center in Oklahoma City, Okla.
The Proton Therapy Center of Central DuPage Hospital will be a four-treatment room facility, with the capacity to treat 1,500 patients per year. The development of the treatment center will create approximately 100 full-time jobs and 400 temporary positions for construction and start-up operations. Illinois-based contractors will be used to construct the facility. The project is being funded entirely through private sources. All equipment to be used to treat patients in the center has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which regulates medical devices.
“The demand for proton therapy has grown tremendously as new research has shown its effectiveness. The board’s decision is an important step forward in providing more patients with this advanced treatment,” said Luke McGuinness, president and chief executive officer of Central DuPage Hospital. “We are thrilled with the board’s decision and look forward to establishing DuPage County as a nationally renowned center of excellence for cancer treatment.”
“Patients have been treated with proton therapy for more than 40 years in the United States and have experienced remarkable results,” said Hadley Ford, chief executive officer of ProCure Treatment Centers. “Being able to help physicians and hospitals bring this therapy to their patients is tremendously rewarding.”
For more information: www.procure.com