ProHealth Care Cancer Center will transform the patient experience

May 29, 2013

DOTmed: Please outline the scope of this project.
ProHealth Care announced their plans to build a 21st century cancer center designed to transform the patient experience and meet the needs of the community long into the future.

"Modern medicine is making great strides in cancer care, but cancer remains a difficult diagnosis, and our patients deserve the very best we can offer," said Susan Edwards, ProHealth Care’s chief executive officer. "With this project, we will be able to provide convenient, accessible, state-of-the-art care delivered in a way that exceeds expectations."

The cancer center will be built on a 14-acre site in Pewaukee along Pewaukee Road, just north of the I-94 interchange. It will provide easy access to care for patients throughout ProHealth Care’s service area.

"We will be moving a first-class cancer program into a first-class facility, and we could not be more excited about what this will mean for our patients and our community," said Peter Johnson, MD, a medical oncologist and medical director of the ProHealth Care cancer program.

"At ProHealth, we offer the latest treatment options for adults with cancer, plus access to leading clinical trials, and our patients’ five-year survival rates regularly exceed national averages," Dr. Johnson said. "We are proud to be able to bring the highest level of care to our patients."

This month, ProHealth’s outpatient cancer services received special recognition from the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the world’s leading professional organization representing physicians who care for people with cancer. The organization certified ProHealth’s oncology program under its Quality Oncology Practice Initiative, making ProHealth the first health care system in southeastern Wisconsin to attain this distinction.

ProHealth Care has long been the leading provider of cancer care in Waukesha County and surrounding communities. The majority of newly diagnosed cancer patients in Waukesha County entrust their care to ProHealth Care.

The new cancer center will pull together, at one convenient location, all of the services patients need, from diagnosis and treatment to support and survivorship services.

While the new cancer center will be the hub of ProHealth’s cancer program, the organization will continue to operate cancer centers at Oconomowoc Memorial Hospital and the D. N. Greenwald Center in Mukwonago, offering care close to home for patients in those areas. The outpatient cancer services now on the Waukesha Memorial Hospital campus will relocate to the new cancer center in Pewaukee.

The project recognizes the rapid changes that have occurred in cancer care. Cancer treatment once was provided largely on hospital campuses, but now most treatment does not require hospital care. National data show that a typical cancer patient will have about 120 outpatient medical encounters for every one inpatient stay.

All of the services at the new cancer center, from diagnosis through treatment and survivorship, will have the same goal – helping patients and their families live well after a cancer diagnosis. ProHealth will continue to enhance its multi-disciplinary approach, meaning that patients benefit from the skills of a variety of experts and that all aspects of a patient’s care are carefully coordinated. An oncology nurse navigator will be assigned to each patient at the new cancer center to ensure that patients understand their care options and treatment plans and can easily make their way through the health care system.

The design of the new cancer center will create warm and inviting environments that promote comfort and ease stress. The design will make maximum use of daylight and will capitalize on the natural features of the site, which includes a pond and views of a prairie area.

The new cancer center is being designed by Cannon Design, an architectural, engineering and interior design firm with 17 offices around the world. Cannon specializes in health care and has extensive experience designing cancer centers. Its clients include premier organizations like Mayo Clinic, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and the Johns Hopkins Hospital. Cannon architects bring to their work years of research focusing on the relationship among patients, families and staff and their physical environments.

The new ProHealth building is expected to encompass about 116,000 square feet. Construction and equipment costs are expected to total about $70 million. The ProHealth Care Foundation will be seeking community support to help cover part of the cost of the project.

The cancer center will incorporate a full complement of advanced diagnostic imaging technology. The diagnostics area will have a separate entrance so that it can be used not only by cancer patients but also by other ProHealth patients who need imaging services. The diagnostics area will include ProHealth’s Center for Breast Care.

ProHealth expects to begin construction this fall and open the new cancer center in January 2015.

DOTmed: How will this project help the community you serve?
'We aim to provide a fundamentally different and better experience, one that clears away the inconveniences and obstacles cancer patients and their families so often encounter.'