UT Health Northeast becomes newest network partner with MD Anderson

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Dignitaries from across Smith County and the East Texas region gathered on the campus of UT Health Northeast Thursday, Jan. 25, to open the newest MD Anderson Cancer Network partner, UT Health Northeast publicity officials announced.

UT Health Northeast M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Tyler joins six U.S. partner healthcare institutions and three international facilities with the goal of eradicating cancer.

M.D. Anderson officials cited enhanced local access to the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center’s multi-disciplinary approach, treatment innovations, and standards of care as keys to this partnership.

In the future, as the program expands, select clinical trials and other research opportunities will be added, officials said.

“When the vision of expanding our cancer program was conceived 10 years ago, there were fewer than 4,000 people in Northeast Texas diagnosed with cancer that year. This year, more than 10,000 people are expected to be diagnosed,” said UT Health Northeast President Dr. Kirk Calhoun.

“This partnership will significantly impact our families, friends and communities – reducing cancer rates and improving outcomes,” he said. “For adult patients in Northeast Texas and parts of Louisiana, Arkansas and Oklahoma, truly exceptional cancer care is now easier to access and more convenient to home.”

Ray Greenberg, the U.T. System’s executive vice chancellor for health affairs, cited UT Health Northeast’s experience in the region and overall commitment to the well being of East Texans as being key factors in this venture.

“This new partnership is a prime example of what can be accomplished when two great institutions bring their strengths together,” Greenberg said. “UT Health Northeast has deep knowledge and experience in serving this region. MD Anderson Cancer Center is the world’s leader in cancer care. Together, they will bring state-of-the-art medical care to the people of Northeast Texas.”

Through its network, MD Anderson collaborates with community hospitals and health systems to elevate the quality of cancer care nationwide and around the world, said Peter W.T. Pisters, president of MD Anderson Cancer Center.

“Collaboration is key to continuing our advance against cancer. In UT Health Northeast, we have a partner committed to our mission to end cancer,” Pisters said. “Together, leveraging each institution’s strengths, we are bringing a new standard of innovative cancer care to this community. ‘’

Elected officials from Texas also provided their support for this partnership.

“Texas is blessed with some of the world’s finest medical research and healthcare centers, and the partnership between MD Anderson and UT Health Northeast is an exciting new development for patients, physicians and researchers,” said U.S. Sen. John Cornyn. “By pooling resources and working together, the opportunities for successful treatments and cutting-edge therapies will be greater than ever, benefiting the entire Northeast Texas region.”

Other speakers at the dedication ceremony included Dr. Steve Hahn, MD Anderson deputy president and chief operating officer; Regent Kevin Eltife, UT System Board of Regents; Tyler Mayor Martin Heines; UT Health Development Board President Mike Allen, and UT Health cancer patient and survivor Jean Daigle of Lindale.

For more than 70 years, what is today UT Health Northeast has provided patient care and advanced treatment, specializing in cancer, pulmonary and heart disease, primary care and the specialties that support it, and behavioral health.

As the only university medical center in Northeast Texas, UT Health is a leader in public health, in graduate medical education – with residencies in family medicine, rural family medicine, occupational medicine, psychiatry, and occupational medicine – and in graduate education, with degrees in biotechnology and public health.

Additionally, UT Health’s Center for Biomedical Research consistently ranks in the top percentile for grants awarded by the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Disease Control, and other research funding organizations.

For more information, visit www.uthealth.org.

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston ranks as one of the world’s most respected centers focused on cancer patient care, research, education and prevention.

The institution’s sole mission is to end cancer for patients and their families around the world. MD Anderson is one of only 49 comprehensive cancer centers designated by the National Cancer Institute (NCI).

MD Anderson is ranked No. 1 for cancer care in U.S. News & World Report’s Best Hospitals survey. It has ranked as one of the nation’s top two hospitals for cancer care since the survey began in 1990, and has ranked first 13 times in the last 16 years.

The UT Health Northeast MD Anderson Cancer Center has grown from the UT Health Northeast Cancer Treatment and Prevention Center, which first opened its doors in November 2011.

The new cancer center builds on the practice that puts the patient at the forefront of every decision made, including convenient access to advanced treatment technologies, groundbreaking clinical trials, and a full range of supportive care services all in one location.

The center’s focus is to provide patients with advanced, patient-centered and compassionate care, including medical oncology, radiation therapy, surgical oncology, immunology, pathology, laboratory and diagnostic imaging, as well as other clinical and support services.

The center is accredited with commendations from the Commission on Cancer, an organization that sets rigorous accreditation standards to ensure cancer care is patient-centered, measured against national standards to improve outcomes, and also focused on prevention, research and education.

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