Summit Medical Group and MD Anderson Cancer Center Announce Plans to Provide World-Class Cancer Care to Residents of Northern New Jersey

150mdaFirst-of-its-kind agreement between national cancer care leader and NJ’s largest multispecialty physician group.

Summit Medical Group and The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center have signed a letter of intent to develop a joint, outpatient cancer center, as an extension of MD Anderson’s partnership with Cooper University Health Care, that will provide an integrated, multidisciplinary approach to oncology care in northern New Jersey.

The agreement is the first of its kind between MD Anderson and a physician-owned and governed multispecialty group. Summit Medical Group and MD Anderson will work together to plan and develop the new outpatient center. MD Anderson will provide clinical oversight and management for the program, which will include radiation oncology, medical oncology, infusion and diagnostic imaging.

When formalized, Summit Medical Group will become a member of MD Anderson Cancer Network®, the institution’s program to elevate the quality of cancer care in communities throughout the nation and the world. The relationship will enable Summit Medical Group to be operationally and clinically integrated with MD Anderson and contribute to the institution’s mission to end cancer.

The relationship will provide Summit Medical Group patients access to MD Anderson’s world-renowned treatment protocols, extensive clinical trials and cutting edge research, while remaining in the care of their Summit Medical Group primary care physicians, oncologists and other healthcare specialists. Summit Medical Group will be able to provide comprehensive cancer care to its patients from diagnosis to survivorship, ensure strong communication between all treating physicians and preserve the patient-physician relationships that have existed for many years.

“We are thrilled to have MD Anderson, a national and global leader in cancer care, bring its unique knowledge and unparalleled expertise to this relationship,” said Jeffrey Le Benger, MD, chairman and chief executive officer of Summit Medical Group. “Together with our multidisciplinary model that is transforming how healthcare is delivered in New Jersey, we are better positioned to provide comprehensive, world-class cancer care to patients and their families.”

“MD Anderson Cancer Center at Cooper is a hugely successful partnership that delivers MD Anderson’s proven model of cancer treatment, care and research to South Jersey patients,” said Thomas Burke, MD, executive vice president of MD Anderson Cancer Network. “We look forward to extending our partnership with Cooper and building a relationship with Summit Medical Group to further elevate cancer care in Northern New Jersey and advance our mission to end cancer.”

“Since partnering with MD Anderson Cancer Center, Cooper has had an overwhelming response, which shows the value that MD Anderson brings to the people of New Jersey,” said George E. Norcross, III, Chairman of the Board at Cooper.

Located in Houston, Texas, MD Anderson is the largest freestanding cancer center in the world. For the past 25 years, it has ranked as one of the top two cancer treatment centers in the United States, according to U.S. News and World Report’s “Best Hospitals” surveys. Since its inception in 1941, nearly one million patients have sought the innovative cancer care and prevention services that have made MD Anderson so widely respected. MD Anderson also ranks first in the total amount of grant dollars from the National Cancer Institute. MD Anderson employs more than 20,000 people, including more than 1,800 physicians and scientists.

Summit Medical Group is the state’s largest multispecialty physician group with more than 500 practitioners in 50 locations throughout central and northern New Jersey. Its Diamond Hill campus in Berkeley Heights is home to its NAPBC-accredited Breast Care Center, one of only two centers in New Jersey designated a National Consortium of Breast Centers Certified Quality Breast Center of Excellence. Onsite services at Diamond Hill also include laboratory with anatomic pathology and cytology testing, diagnostic radiological imaging services, infusion suite, genetic counseling and access to more than 80 American Medical Association specialties and services. Its board-certified oncologists and hematologists are members of Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, Atlantic Health System’s Carol G. Simon Cancer Center and the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. Summit Medical Group physicians are consistently ranked as top doctors in local, state and regional surveys.

About Summit Medical Group

Summit Medical Group (SMG) is the largest privately held multispecialty medical practice in New Jersey. SMG maintains a 42-acre healthcare campus in Berkeley Heights and 50 additional practice locations in central and northern New Jersey. As an East Coast premier multispecialty group, SMG has provided exceptional primary and specialty care since 1929. For more, visit www.summitmedicalgroup.com.

About MD Anderson

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. MD Anderson is one of only 41 comprehensive cancer centers designated by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). For the past 25 years, MD Anderson has ranked as one of the nation’s top two cancer centers in U.S. News & World Report’s annual “Best Hospitals” survey. MD Anderson receives a cancer center support grant from the NCI of the National Institutes of Health (P30 CA016672).

About MD Anderson Cancer Center at Cooper

Cooper University Health Care and MD Anderson Cancer Center partnered to create MD Anderson Cancer Center at Cooper and opened a new free-standing cancer center on the Health Sciences Campus in Camden, New Jersey in 2013. MD Anderson Cooper brings together MD Anderson’s world-renowned expertise and Cooper’s regional leadership in a partnership that opens up a broader range of options for cancer patients in South Jersey, Delaware and the Greater Philadelphia region. MD Anderson Cooper physicians, in Camden, Voorhees, Willingboro and Mount Laurel (CyberKnife), NJ locations, adhere to the philosophy, process and guidelines set by MD Anderson in Houston, Texas, and patients receive the same proven practice standards and treatment protocols provided at MD Anderson. Disease-site specific multidisciplinary teams, consisting of physicians, nurses and other clinical specialists, work together to provide cancer patients with advanced diagnostic and treatment technologies as well as access to a wide range of groundbreaking clinical trials.

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Cooper Surgeon Performs NJ’s First FDA-Approved Drug-Coated Balloon Procedure for PAD

On October 15, 2014, Joseph V. Lombardi, MD, FACS, Head of the Division of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery and Director of the Cooper Aortic Center at Cooper University Health Care, was the first surgeon in New Jersey to treat advanced peripheral arterial disease (PAD) in a patient using the innovative Lutonix® 035 Drug-Coated Balloon (DCB) percutaneous transluminal angioplasty (PTA) catheter. This treatment is the first and only treatment of its kind approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat PAD, a disease in which plaque builds up in the arteries that carry blood to the head, organs and limbs, creating blockages.

“This is a significant leap forward in the minimally invasive treatment of peripheral vascular disease,” said Dr. Lombardi. “Drug delivery using balloon technology can offer our patients better long term results with same day treatments. We always look forward to offering our patients here at Cooper the very best technology available for the best results.”

The procedure was performed on a 74-year-old man with advanced peripheral arterial disease who potentially faced limb amputation, according to Dr. Lombardi. The minimally invasive procedure was a success and the patient was discharged later in the day.

Millions of Americans suffer from PAD in the femoropopliteal artery. If untreated, PAD can lead to critical limb ischemia (CLI), a severe blockage in the arteries of the legs or feet, and, eventually, even amputation. Recent data shows the majority of all leg and foot amputations in the U.S. are due to vascular disease, including PAD.

Successful treatment of PAD requires improved blood flow (patency) for longer periods of time. Developed by C.R. Bard, the Lutonix 035 DCB uniquely combines an angioplasty balloon coated with a low dose of the drug Paclitaxel to improve blood flow in blocked vessels above the knee.

“Currently, minimally invasive procedures such as angioplasty balloons, stents, atherectomy, medications and vascular bypass surgery are some of the accepted ways to treat PAD, but these options may be limited depending on the type of arterial blockage,” said Dr. Lombardi. The Lutonix 035 DCB is a safe and effective addition to the treatment for PAD in the femoropopliteal artery. Treatment with drug coated balloons (DCBs), also called drug-eluting balloons (DEBs), is similar to standard angioplasty. Unlike standard PTA, however, DCBs also deliver pharmacological treatment to the target lesion and are designed to reduce restenosis and improve patency without leaving a metal stent behind.

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Helen’s Angels Present MD Anderson Cancer Center at Cooper With $10,000 Donation

On Monday, September 22, 2014, representatives from Helen’s Angels presented physicians and staff from MD Anderson Cancer Center at Cooper and the Cooper Foundation with a $10,000 check to support the Patient in Need Fund.

Helen’s Angels, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization committed to the support of individuals and their families in the Greater Philadelphia area who have been diagnosed with, impacted by or recovering from breast cancer. Helen’s Angels provides support for direct financial assistance, as well as covering the costs of cleaning assistance, wigs, guidance and counseling. Funds are raised through direct donations and sponsorships; and through,the annual “Tinis for Tatas” fundraiser, which took place in September at the American Pub in Philadelphia.

Pictured at the check presentation are (from L to R):  Donald Haas, Secretary, Helen’s Angels; Missy A. Quinn, President, Helen’s Angels; Richard McClure, Treasurer, Helen’s Angels; Generosa Grana, MD, Head, Division of Hematology/Medical Oncology, MD Anderson Cancer Center at Cooper; Susan Bass Levin, President and CEO, The Cooper Foundation; and Ann Steffney, RN, Director, Supportive Care Services, MD Anderson Cancer Center at Cooper. Not pictured: Gloria Markward-Owens, Vice President, Helen’s Angels.

Pictured at the check presentation are (from L to R): Donald Haas, Secretary, Helen’s Angels; Missy A. Quinn, President, Helen’s Angels; Richard McClure, Treasurer, Helen’s Angels; Generosa Grana, MD, Head, Division of Hematology/Medical Oncology, MD Anderson Cancer Center at Cooper; Susan Bass Levin, President and CEO, The Cooper Foundation; and Ann Steffney, RN, Director, Supportive Care Services, MD Anderson Cancer Center at Cooper. Not pictured: Gloria Markward-Owens, Vice President, Helen’s Angels.

“We are thrilled to present this donation to MD Anderson Cooper, Patient in Need Fund,” says Missy A. Quinn, President of Helen’s Angels. “My mother would be very proud of the work we are doing and the women and families we have been able to help through our partnerships with outstanding organizations such as MD Anderson Cooper.” Helen’s Angels was established in memory of Helen Margaret Henderson, who died in 1985 after a three-year battle with breast cancer when Missy was in her teens.

According to Quinn, “The Patient in Need Fund is perfectly aligned with our mission of support; and nothing makes me happier than to consider our friends at MD Anderson Cooper as one of our Partners in Pink.”

“This generous donation from Helen’s Angels is a gift from heaven,” said Susan Bass Levin, President and CEO of the Cooper Foundation. “I am sure Helen is up there smiling at her daughter and is proud of the work she is doing to support patients at MD Anderson Cooper in their battle against breast cancer.”

MD Anderson Cooper’s Patient in Need Fund provides small grants to patients who need financial assistance to cover expenses such as prescriptions, transportation, rent, food and utility bills, as well as other expenses. MD Anderson Cooper staff members identify patients in need and provide allocations from this fund after all other outside resources for support have been exhausted.

“So many of our patients experience financial strain while undergoing cancer treatment,” says Generosa Grana, MD, Director, MD Anderson Cancer Center at Cooper. “This generous donation from Helen’s Angels will provide much needed support to our patients so they can focus on recovery.”

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United Airlines Makes Special Delivery to Pediatric Patients at Cooper

On Tuesday, September 16, 2014, United Airlines employees delivered some very special cargo to young patients at the Children’s Regional Hospital at Cooper.  Each child on the Pediatric and Pediatric Intensive Care units received a new fuzzy friend named “Ben Flyin” as part of United’s community outreach efforts.

Hailey W.  is all smiles after receiving her bear.

Hailey W. is all smiles after receiving her bear.

For the past three years, United has unveiled a limited edition GUND® teddy bear as the mascot for each year’s Adventure Bear program. United employees volunteer for the mission of delivering the teddy bears to children at 370 hospitals, schools and other locations around the country. In addition to the bear, each child also receives a specially designed passport booklet with stories about Ben Flyin’s adventures, games and other activities to occupy their time while they are in the hospital.

At the special delivery to the Children’s Regional Hospital at Cooper:  (l to r) United Airlines employees Kathleen Agudo, Felicia Daniels and Blenda Riccick; Cooper Foundation President and Chief Executive Officer Susan Bass-Levin; Cooper Child-Life Specialist Brittany Spaeth; and United employees Richard Chibbaro, Robert Carls and Lisa Carls.

At the special delivery to the Children’s Regional Hospital at Cooper: (l to r) United Airlines employees Kathleen Agudo, Felicia Daniels and Blenda Riccick; Cooper Foundation President and Chief Executive Officer Susan Bass-Levin; Cooper Child-Life Specialist Brittany Spaeth; and United employees Richard Chibbaro, Robert Carls and Lisa Carls.

In total, 125 bears were donated for patients at Cooper through the Cooper Foundation. “We are pleased to have United as an ongoing supporter,” said Susan Bass-Levin, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Cooper Foundation. “We are grateful for their efforts to spread cheer and goodwill to our young patients. “

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Cooper University Hospital Opens Two New Patient Floors in the Pavilion

Cooper University Hospital celebrated the opening of two new floors in the Roberts Pavilion, each with 30 private patient rooms. The two floors are designed to serve specific patient populations with Pavilion 8 serving a growing advanced-care surgery patient population and Pavilion 9 serving the Cooper Heart Institute for hospitalized heart patients.

Cooper’s strategy over the past few years has been to build strong patient-centered institutes for tertiary care for the complex health care needs of surgery, trauma, cancer and cardiac patients. We have also been focused on building relationships with patients, physicians and other health care organizations through comprehensive programs and a robust transfer center. These approaches have resulted in a 6.9 percent increase in patient admissions over the last five years, with much of the increase being seen in those patients requiring tertiary-level care.P8P9

Both floors include intermediate monitoring, which allows a higher level of care without the patient having to be moved to a different room or floor. This is an important feature as cardiac patients often are transferred several times in one hospitalization. Other technological advances include a smart nurse call system, allowing the patient to better direct their request for care to hospital personnel. Each patient room will have an interactive white board, or monitor, which provides their nurse’s name, important phone numbers and educational information relevant to the patient’s health care needs. In addition, patients will be able to choose meals from a full room-service menu beginning in January.

Building upon the current advances already available at Cooper, we made several changes to enhance the quality of patient-centered care. Units now have stations for nurse and physician collaboration. Nurse work stations are located directly outside the patient room to increase visual monitoring, as well as provide easier access for patients and families to reach their care giver. Another unique feature is the nurse server unit which houses supplies and linens that can be accessed from both inside or outside the room to reduce disturbances to the patient.

Each private patient room has a spa-like bathroom with mosaic tiles and an easy-access shower. For the patient’s visitors, there is a comfortable sleeper sofa as well as a workspace for a lap top. There is also a private safe in each room.

One of the highlights of the floors are the large murals of South Jersey landmarks throughout the hallways and waiting areas. The artwork creates a feeling of nostalgia and familiarity and provides a respite for patients and family members.

The units will open to patients on Monday, August 11, 2014. As we continue to prepare the units for opening, we remind you that access to these units prior to opening will be restricted, unless accompanied by someone on the planning team. The restricted access applies to the entirety of both units, including, but not limited to, the family waiting rooms, consult rooms and conference rooms.

Thank you for all your continued support as we welcome our patients to these
new floors.

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