Program aims to offer new types of care for child cancer patients, gain access to national trials
Louisville, Ky. (April 10, 2017) – Norton Healthcare and the University of Louisville today announced the formation of Norton Children’s Cancer Institute.
Combining the efforts of Norton Cancer Institute and Norton Children’s Hospital, in affiliation with University of Louisville, Norton Children’s Cancer Institute will provide improved access and additional services to care for children fighting cancer. This includes new programs for treating rare tumors and benign blood disorders, such as sickle cell anemia, as well as a revamped program for bone marrow transplants.
In addition to offering new types of care, Norton Children’s Cancer Institute has three primary goals: 1) Increase the number of clinical trials offered to patients and gain access to new therapies in their earliest stages; 2) develop additional groundbreaking research and cutting-edge technology; and 3) recruit additional hematology/oncology specialists and medical students to improve patients’ access to care.
“We expect Norton Children’s Cancer Institute to be the beacon of hope for families not just in Metro Louisville, but throughout the entire commonwealth,” said Thomas D. Kmetz, division president, Women’s and Children’s Services and Norton Children’s Hospital. “This collaboration will create an even more unified focus on delivering unparalleled cancer care to children fighting this terrible disease.”
“This is our chance for Louisville to become nationally recognized in the world of pediatric cancer research and gain access to the most cutting-edge clinical trials,” said Joseph M. Flynn, D.O., MPH, FACP, executive director and physician-in-chief, Norton Cancer Institute. “We see this affiliation as an opportunity to combine our resources and expertise to give kids the best treatment there is.”
The University of Louisville will provide physician support for Norton Children’s Cancer Institute. Norton Healthcare will commit $1 million to UofL per year for pediatric oncology research and physician recruitment, as well as offer leadership and support staff for the institute.
“The relationship between Norton Children’s Hospital and the University of Louisville leading to the creation of Norton Children’s Cancer Institute is to forge a productive collaboration in the battle against childhood cancer,” said Toni Ganzel, M.D., MBA, executive dean for the UofL Health Sciences Center. “The division of pediatric hematology/oncology within the UofL School of Medicine has been part of one of medicine’s greatest successes in the sharp rise in survival rates of children with cancer.
“With more survivors, there is an urgent need to understand the effect of treatments on the entire body, not just the cancer. With a multidisciplinary approach and comprehensive treatment and support services, Norton Children’s Cancer Institute will have at its core a sense of urgency not only in bringing newer therapies to accelerate childhood cancer survival rates but also to intently focus on the survivors and alert them to potential risks, including serious and sometimes life-threatening complications, as late effects of cancer treatments.”
Within Norton Children’s Cancer Institute, inpatients will continue to be treated at the Addison Jo Blair Cancer Care Center in Norton Children’s Hospital. For outpatients, the institute will occupy the fourth floor of the University of Louisville’s new 170,000-square-foot pediatric medical office building at 401 E. Chestnut St. The facility is still under construction and is expected to be completed in July 2018.
With more than 8,000 pediatric cancer visits each year, Norton Children’s Hospital is home to the country’s oldest children’s oncology program, continually accredited by the American College of Surgeons’ Commission on Cancer (CoC) since 1959. As the teaching facility for the University of Louisville School of Medicine Department of Pediatrics, Norton Children’s Hospital is dedicated to its mission of serving the children of this community and region.
Learn more about the Norton Children’s Cancer Institute here.