PITTSFIELD — The Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons has granted a three-year accreditation with commendation to the Berkshire Medical Center Cancer Program. This comes after an on-site evaluation by a physician surveyor during which BMC demonstrated a ‘commendation level’ of compliance with one or more standards that represent the full scope of the cancer program. This is the second time BMC’s program has achieved the three-year accreditation with commendation, which was also granted in 2007.
“The cancer committee at BMC and the many people who provide services to our cancer patients across numerous disciplines can be very proud of the work they do for our community,” said Diane Kelly, chief operating officer of BMC. “This national recognition was the result of a dedicated team approach to providing the best care possible for cancer patients in the Berkshires.”
During the physician survey, the entire scope of the cancer program is reviewed, including the cancer committee leadership, cancer data management, clinical services, research, community outreach, and quality improvement. The BMC Cancer Program is led by Dr. Ethan Flynn, committee chair and coordinator of Quality of Cancer Registry Data; Dr. Michael DiSiena, cancer liaison physician; Dr. Spyridon Triantos, past committee chair; Dr. Rebecca Johnson, coordinator of cancer conferences; Michele DeLisle, coordinator of quality improvement, Martha Talis-Floyd, coordinator of community outreach; and Pam Manzolini, tumor registrar.
Receiving care at a Commission on Cancer-approved program ensures that a patient has access to comprehensive care, including a range of state-of-the-art services and technology; a multi-specialty team approach to coordinate the best treatment options; information about ongoing clinical trials and new treatment options; access to cancer-related information, education, and support; a cancer registry that collects data on type and stage of cancers and treatment results and offers lifelong patient follow-up; ongoing monitoring and improvement of care; and quality care close to home.
The American Cancer Society estimates that more than 1.4 million cases of cancer were diagnosed in 2009. There are more than 1,400 Commission on Cancer-accredited cancer programs in the U.S. and Puerto Rico, representing close to 25% of all hospitals. These of hospitals diagnose and/or treat 80% of newly diagnosed cancer patients each year.
The Commission on Cancer is a consortium of professional organizations dedicated to improving survival rates and quality of life for cancer patients through standard-setting, prevention, research, education, and the monitoring of comprehensive, quality care.