The Commission on Cancer (CoC), a program of the American College of Surgeons (ACS), has granted three-year accreditation to Mary Bird Perkins – Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center. To earn voluntary CoC accreditation, a cancer program must meet 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.
As a CoC-accredited cancer center, the Cancer Center uses a multidisciplinary approach in treating cancer by involving consultation among surgeons, medical and radiation oncologists, diagnostic radiologists, pathologists, and other cancer specialists. This multidisciplinary partnership results in improved patient care.
“Putting the patient at the center of everything we do is always our primary focus,” said Linda Lee, vice president, Mary Bird Perkins – Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center. “We are, of course, delighted to receive this prestigious accreditation, but all of the clinical programs, technology, advanced treatments, patient safety systems and other elements in place are there to ensure patients receive the highest-quality care. This CoC recognition is a wonderful validation that we are doing everything possible to improve survivorship and lessen the burden of cancer for everyone we serve.”
The CoC Accreditation Program provides the framework for the Cancer Center to improve its quality of patient care through various cancer-related programs that focus on the full spectrum of oncology care including prevention, early diagnosis, cancer staging, optimal treatment, rehabilitation, life-long follow-up for recurrent disease, and palliative 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 and a patient navigation process.
“Research shows that patients have a better chance at beating cancer when being treated at a facility with a collaborative approach to cancer care,” said John Lyons, MD, surgical oncologist and cancer committee chair, Mary Bird Perkins – Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center. “We’ve been doing this for years and our eye is always on the next innovations in cancer care that will provide enhanced outcomes the best experience possible for patients.”
Like all CoC-accredited facilities, Mary Bird Perkins – Our Lady of the Lake 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. 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.
Lyons added that the entire Cancer Center team makes this type of recognition possible, and said that Tracy Rauch, MD, a pathologist and CoC liaison, was highlighted in the report for her work in utilizing and sharing NCDB data to enhance cancer care throughout the state.
Established in 1922 by the American College of Surgeons, the CoC is a consortium of professional organizations dedicated to improving patient outcomes and quality of life for cancer patients through standard-setting, prevention, research, education, and the monitoring of comprehensive, quality care. Its membership includes fellows of the American College of Surgeons.