Expanded Truman cancer center further builds cancer alliance


A new cancer center at Truman Medical Center will further expand the collaborative Midwest Cancer Alliance and provide expanded services to the low-income patients Truman serves.

Truman Medical Center will be able to treat more cancer patients, expand its use of clinical trials, and provide more services to the low-income people it serves, all thanks to a new oncology unit that will open next year.

Truman announced the project yesterday at a press conference.

“This is a momentous day for TMC and for cancer care in the Kansas City Metro area,” said President/CEO John W. Bluford. “The R.A. Bloch Cancer Foundation gift is another spark in the collaboration that exists among 15 hospital and research organizations throughout the region and spurs advancement of all of the member organizations of the Midwest Cancer Alliance.”

The new oncology unit will be called “The Richard and Annette Bloch Cancer Center at Truman Medical Centers.” The $2.3 million gift by the R.A. Bloch Cancer Foundation endows the first cancer care center to bear the family’s name in Kansas City, Mo, and demonstrates their continued investment in research and cancer care on both sides of the state line, Truman said.

Here are more details from a press release:

The Richard and Annette Bloch Cancer Center at TMC will focus on state-of-the-art quality care, comfort, safety and providing a healing environment for patients and their families. At nearly 17,000 square foot the new cancer center will more than triple the size of the current unit at TMC. The new center will feature a comforting welcome area, ten dedicated exam rooms and one procedure room along with 16 chemotherapy infusion rooms equipped with comfortable recliners and individual TV/entertainment centers for patients. Dedicated to the convenience of patients, the center also will feature an on-site pharmacy with specially trained oncological pharmacists, patient navigator staff available for consultations, education and a social worker to help address patients’ ongoing medical and home-life needs. A special “boutique” also will be available that provides consultations and private fittings for wigs and prosthetics for patients during advanced cancer treatment.

“My goal in life is to make a difference in people’s lives,” Annette Bloch said. “I’m so happy to be a part of the wonderful care given to cancer patients at Truman Medical Centers.”

TMC is an active member of the Midwest Cancer Alliance (MCA) and works in collaboration with the University of Kansas (KU) Cancer Center on clinical trials. This relationship has resulted in a regional, advanced collaborative approach to research. Specifically, through expanded enrollment capacity, TMC patients have increased access to MCA sponsored clinical trials through the KU Cancer Center and in turn the trials’ research has benefited from expanded demographics including patients with co-morbidities and/or socioeconomic disparities.

“This generous gift from the R.A. Bloch Cancer Foundation not only strengthens cancer care at Truman Medical Centers, but it will also help expand research opportunities and promote our shared goal of health equity across all Midwest Cancer Alliance institutions,” said Roy A. Jensen, M.D., director of The University of Kansas Cancer Center.

The new Richard and Annette Bloch Cancer Center at TMC will allow cancer patients access to state-of-the-art cancer care with these Midwest Cancer Alliance benefits:

  • Clinical trials – Access to the latest research protocols and to therapeutic and prevention trials – and opportunities to enroll patients at each member’s site.
  • Tele-Oncology – Tele-video (ITV) based system for on-site patient consultations with multidisciplinary oncology teams at the KU Cancer Center.
  • Outreach programs and events – Prevention, screening, early detection, and survivorship programs and events co-sponsored by the MCA and member institutions.
  • Networking events and conferences – Periodic meetings to bring together MCA member oncologists and cancer care professionals to learn from each other and share best practices.
  • Continuing professional education – Cancer-specific continuing medical and nursing education credits.
  • Patient navigation – Technical assistance in developing and expanding patient navigation services.

“None of this could have happened without the generous support of our donors and especially the R.A. Bloch Cancer Foundation, the Hall Family Foundation and the J. E. and L. E. Mabee Foundation,” said Tom Holcom, who along with Mark Thornhill co-chaired the Cancer Center Capital Campaign. “The nearly $6 million cancer center expansion has been funded entirely by philanthropic support arranged through the TMC Charitable Foundation and the benefit to the organization, our community and our patients is immeasurable.”

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