Owensboro Health announced a new partnership with the University of Kentucky Markey Cancer Center by becoming a part of a research network which will allow Owensboro Health to extend the benefit of clinical trials to patients.
Cindy Reed, whose story was told in a video shown during the announcement this afternoon, is a perfect example of how this research network could help cancer patients. In March of 2016, Cindy discovered a lump on her chest that was determined cancerous. After being referred to the Owensboro Health Mitchell Memorial Cancer Center, Reed’s radiation oncologist, Dr. Ryan Abel, MD., used information from other clinical trials to plan the best care for Cindy right here in Owensboro.
As a result, Cindy didn’t have to travel for treatment. She was also able to participate in a clinical trial during her treatment, which she says gives her great comfort knowing her experience can help others in the future. Today, she feels “back to normal” and is surprised at how quickly she has recovered.
“Through our partnership with Markey we’ll have access to many more clinical trials than we would have on our own,” Dr. Abel stated in the video. “We can bring the resources that UK has right here to Owensboro.”
What this partnership boils down to is more opportunities for research, more tools for prevention, and more resources for the treatment of cancer.
Owensboro Health CEO, Greg Strahan, says ultimately the partnership with UK Markey Cancer Center provides hope to patients. “Hope that patients can receive high-quality care right here in Owensboro. Hope that we’ll be able to detect and prevent cancer before it starts. Hope that today’s research will be tomorrow’s cure. Hope that we’ll be able to change the culture and help our community for future generations.”
Today’s announcement makes Owensboro Health the sixth hospital in Kentucky to join the research network.
Dr. Tim Mullett, Medical Director of the Markey Cancer Center, says research is the only way to fight cancer and a team-based approach is the key to making an impact. “We’ve found that the more we engage multiple leaders within our cancer care areas the better opportunity we have to deliver good care to a patient. … By linking together specialists from each area (surgery, treatment, rehab, nutrition, etc) and sharing research from clinical trials physicians can make better decisions for treatment.”
Mullett explained that increasing communication between the six hospitals in the Markey Center research network means patients get the benefit of “best practice” information being discussed. “Within our network, some sites do certain trials depending on their resources, capacity, and experience. Part of that teamwork that’s now going to happen at Owensboro Health means we can expand and virtually include our team in Lexington as well.”