Officials at Ottumwa Regional Health Center and Jefferson County Health Center announced Thursday that the two facilities are partnering to expand cancer care services in Southeast Iowa. On April 1, the McCreery Cancer Center at Ottumwa Regional Health Center will be expanding to include a location at Jefferson County Health Center in Fairfield.
According to Ottumwa Regional Health Center CEO Phil Noel, â??We believe that by combining the strengths and skills of both hospitals, it will improve local access to high quality, compassionate cancer services. By forming this unique partnership, combining the resources of two great hospitals and communities, together we are able to meet the needs of cancer patients in Southeast Iowa into the future.â??
Starting April 1, medical oncology services (chemotherapy) will only be provided at the new McCreery Cancer Center at Jefferson County Health Center while radiation oncology services will remain at the current location at The McCreery Cancer Center at Ottumwa Regional Health Center.
Deb Cardin, RN, FACHE, CEO at Jefferson County Health Center said â??We are pleased to expand our services in conjunction with Ottumwa Regional Health Center and open the McCreery Cancer Center at Jefferson County Health Center. This new partnership will allow each facility to focus on a specific type of care and therapy. We believe that working together; we will be able to better serve our local patients in their fight against cancer.â??
Patients currently receiving care at The McCreery Cancer Center at Ottumwa Regional Health Center have been notified of this change earlier this week. They will continue to receive treatment as they have at the Ottumwa facility. However, if it is more convenient for them, they can begin receiving treatment at the McCreery Cancer Center at Jefferson County Health Center as early as February 24, 2014. Patients needing new chemotherapy treatment on or about April 1 will begin their treatment protocol in Fairfield. Radiation oncology services will continue to be available at The McCreery Cancer Center at Ottumwa Regional Health Center.
Dr. Ted Haas, Chairman of the Board at Ottumwa Regional Health Center said, â??I am so excited about this innovative partnership. All across the country, healthcare organizations are exploring all sorts of unique partnerships and alliances in order to meet patient needs. As a board member and physician it is extremely gratifying to see the boards and leadership of these two hospitals align services and clinical expertise in order to meet the needs of our patients and their families and allow the people of Southeast Iowa to get the care they need close to home.â??
As part of the partnership, the two hospitals are exploring numerous options related to any necessary patient transportation between the facilities and will be announcing details shortly.
Mr. Noel added, â??It is important to note that this upcoming change will have no impact on healthcare insurance or Medicare or Medicaid coverage of cancer care services. Both hospitals participate in the same insurance plans so there is expected to be no financial impact to patients from this service expansion.â??