Sarah Cannon - December 16, 2014

At Sarah Cannon, we talk a lot about our Cancer Centers of Excellence , and you may be wondering what that means, why it's important, and how it can affect your treatment.

Cancer Centers of Excellence have four main goals:

  1. To provide patient-focused care backed by educational resources and forums
  2. To improve the clinical and emotional outcomes of the disease and its treatment through navigation, early detection and prompt, appropriate treatment
  3. To coordinate care to ensure that the best care plan and treatment options are presented to patients
  4. To create a transparent system of quality management and outcomes of cancer patients

When a facility is designated a Cancer Center of Excellence, that means that it offers patients a multidisciplinary approach and access to all treatment options available. Because cancer and cancer therapies affect so many aspects of your health, you will benefit from having more than one doctor involved in your care so they can share information and, with you, collectively make the best decision regarding your care.

Also, how cancer is treated is changing rapidly due to evidenced-based cancer research, said Crystal Dugger, Assistant Vice President, Clinical Operations. "Because Sarah Cannon has designated Centers of Excellence, we are able to apply the latest research to appropriate cases, which benefits our patients."

Centers of Excellence also include needed ancillary resources that meet the needs of the patients, from nutrition counseling, physical therapy and financial counseling to social workers and patient navigators, taking a holistic approach to patient care.

"Our clinical outcomes research has shown that an established Center of Excellence can result in improved outcomes in terms of patient care and treatment," said Dugger. "Sarah Cannon has COEs across the nation in breast cancer, complex GI cancer, lung cancer and bone marrow transplant. These programs measure their quality of care and constantly strive to improve patient therapies and experience."

Learn more about Sarah Cannon Cancer Center of Excellence programs .