CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Dr. Diane Thompson, right, medical director of the Women's Health Center, and Darlena Chadwick, vice president for patient care at the Queen's Medical Center, tour a new facility under construction that will centralize treatment for cancer patients. CLICK FOR LARGE
Queen's touts Cancer Center
A spalike facility will provide patients with a variety of services all under one roof
CANCER PATIENTS and their families will soon be able to get all the medical, physical and emotional services they need in one place at the Queen's Medical Center.
Darlena Chadwick, vice president for patient care, said, "Services were fragmented. People had to go from one office building to another office building, to a surgeon, a medical oncologist, a radiation oncologist, for imaging, a CAT scan, an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging), physical therapy -- a lot of different areas."
THE BIG C, EXPLAINED
Free programs on different forms of cancer are being presented in a series titled "Cancer Facts and Snacks" at the Queen's Conference Center Auditorium.
The programs, held from 11 a.m. to noon: Aug. 28, chemotherapy/radiation therapy; Oct. 23, breast cancer; Dec. 18, lung cancer; and Feb. 26, head and neck. Colon and prostate cancers were covered in earlier lectures. Health-related snacks are provided.
For more information or to register, call 537-7117.
Construction is expected to be completed by the end of the year on a $6 million Cancer Center providing comprehensive care in a spalike setting at Queen's.
"This is a special project to me," said Earl S. Yamashita, senior project manager with Dick Pacific Construction Co. He lost both parents to cancer, he said.
Among services will be cancer screening and diagnosis, radiation, chemotherapy, surgery, genetic counseling, social services, nutritional care and wellness programs, patient education, music therapy, healing touch, massage and acupuncture.
Such a facility was recommended by a Blue Ribbon Panel on Cancer Care convened in 1999 by former Gov. Ben Cayetano with cancer survivors and health professionals.
COURTESY QUEEN'S MEDICAL CENTER
An artist's rendering shows part of the new $6 million Cancer Center under construction at the Queen's Medical Center. The center will provide comprehensive cancer care in a spalike setting. CLICK FOR LARGE
One of the survivor-members was Jackie Young, now with the American Cancer Society, Hawaii Pacific Inc., who has been working with Queen's officials on the new Cancer Center.
"We think it's great," she said. "The more services, the better. Our incidence of cancer is going to increase tremendously over the next few years because of our aging population."
The Blue Ribbon Panel estimated in 2002 that the number of residents with cancer would double over 20 years, Young said, adding there were 5,000 cases a year then and that now the number is up to 6,000 a year.
QUEEN'S, WHICH serves about half of the state's cancer patients, decided to address barriers to care and put everything in one area to serve patients, Chadwick said.
A steering committee is trying to address everything involved in providing comprehensive services to a patient so when the center opens "we're not tripping over our feet," Chadwick said. "It's like a disaster drill."
Kaiser Permanente sends radiation patients to Queen's, as well as neighbor island hospitals, Young noted. Pediatric cancer patients also are sent there for radiation from Kapiolani Medical Center for Women & Children.
Chadwick said Queen's wants to partner with the Cancer Research Center, which is planning a new building next to the University of Hawaii medical school in Kakaako with facilities for clinical trials. "It's not about competition," she said.
CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Diane Thompson, left, psychiatric oncologist and medical director of the Queen's Women's Health Center, and Darlena Chadwick, Queen's vice president of patient care, walk through the hospital's new Cancer Center under construction. CLICK FOR LARGE
Dr. Diane Thompson, psychiatric oncologist, director of the Queen's Cancer Center Program and medical director of its Women's Health Center, said OnCare, a private oncology medical group, will provide medical oncologists and help with research and clinical trials at the new center.
More than $3 million has been pledged toward the Queen's Cancer Center, including more than $40,000* from Queen's employees, who earmarked their annual gift to the center. Additional funding is being sought, Chadwick said.
QUEEN'S HAS invested many millions in infrastructure and equipment for cancer treatment and is "on the forefront of technology," she said.
The equipment includes a Positron Emission Tomography scanner to assess metabolic activity and, in the works, a PET/CAT scanner. It also has the first tomotherapy radiation delivery system in Hawaii, one of only 70 in the nation, which allows precise treatment of a tumor site, Chadwick said.
Doctors, as well as patients, requested a multidisciplinary approach in the new center, Chadwick said. "With reimbursement the way it is, they can't provide all these services. ... We're trying to make it easier for physicians to offer patients comprehensive services."
Patient "navigators" will coordinate services for patients and respond to any questions or concerns they or their families might have, Thompson said. "The navigator is the patient's and family's best friend."
Queen's is working with the American Cancer Society and native Hawaiian community to train community navigators to assist patients with child care, transportation and other needs, Chadwick added. "Together, we can look at the whole person and not just the clinical side."
Wednesday, July 4, 2007
» The Queen's Medical Center employees have pledged more than $40,000 to the new Cancer Center being developed at the hospital with comprehensive services for patients. A Page A5 story Monday gave an incorrect figure.