Our patients say it best. Learn how Cancer Center's expert care affected their lives.
Learning he had cancer of the vocal cords was a real blow for Gary Simmons, manager of the J.C. Penney store in Aiken, S.C. But thanks to a new program at Cancer Center, Simmons was able to see his entire treatment team in one day, under one roof.
Convenient, Comprehensive Care
Cancer Center’s multidisciplinary cancer program was originally developed for patients with cancers of the head and neck, including cancers of the nose and throat, as a better alternative to the traditional model of care.
“In the past, patients had to schedule individual appointments with various physicians, resulting in missed work, unnecessary delays and communication problems,” says David Terris, MD, chairman of the Georgia Regents Medical Center Department of Otolaryngology, who treated Simmons. Instead, Simmons was evaluated by members of a Head and Neck Tumor Board that included a surgeon, radiation oncologist, medical oncologist and pathologist, as well as speech and physical therapists. After Simmons’ evaluations, the physicians conferred and agreed on a comprehensive plan of care. They then met with Simmons to present their recommendations. “This is multidisciplinary care at its finest,” says Dr. Terris.
Simmons agrees. “Meeting with the Tumor Board gave me the opportunity to ask questions and get a general understanding of the recommended treatment from all of the physicians involved. From then on, my care was coordinated like clockwork,” says Simmons.
Many hospitals operate treatment teams that discuss individual patients, but few include and examine patients at these meetings. The result? Patient anxiety is reduced, time lags are eliminated and patients and their family members gain a clearer understanding of what lies ahead. These advantages really make a difference in each patient’s experience at Georgia Regents Medical Center.