The National Pancreas Foundation has named Rush University Medical Center as a National Center of Excellence for Pancreatic Cancer, a designation given to hospitals that have demonstrated the multidisciplinary approach, social support, and advanced research resources needed to successfully treat this disease.
“Receiving a pancreatic cancer diagnosis can be overwhelming for patients and their loved ones” said Mia Levy, MD, PhD, the Sheba Foundation Director of the Rush University Cancer Center in Chicago. “The need to make a series of treatment decisions adds to the burden. Therefore, at Rush, each patient’s pancreatic cancer team includes specialists from several clinical disciplines, as well as non-clinical professionals who provide the support and education needed to treat the whole person, not just their cancer.”
Mia Levy, MD, PhD
Ashiq Masood, MD
“We are proud that Rush has assembled such a talented group of oncologists, surgeons, and radiologists who specialize in pancreatic cancer. But people deserve to know not just who will treat them, but how,” said Ashiq Masood, MD, the Medical Center’s Director of Gastrointestinal Medical Oncology. “Being named a National Center of Excellence for Pancreatic Cancer assures patients that we have both the people and processes to help them through every step of surviving pancreatic cancer.”
Criteria for Excellence
National Pancreatic Foundation Centers of Excellence go through a months-long auditing process to demonstrate they have meet a series of criteria developed by a national task force of pancreatic cancer experts. Those criteria are focused on the designated core personnel, clinical trial access, and support for the whole patient—a comprehensive commitment to social, educational, nutritional, and emotional support programs designed to treat the “whole person.”
Rush University Medical Center is one of 43 hospitals in the country to earn this distinction. The National Pancreas Foundation Centers program was created 5 years ago, when the Foundation saw a growing need from patients who frequently reached out for pancreatic disease specialist recommendations.
Pancreatic cancer is among the deadliest cancers in the United States, and it is expected to surpass colorectal cancer this year as the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States.