July 7, 2019
The Cancer Center at Harrington Earns National Accreditation

Southbridge, MA – The Cancer Center at Harrington has received a three-year accreditation from the Commission on Cancer (CoC) of the American College of Surgeons. To earn voluntary CoC accreditation, a cancer program must meet 34 CoC quality care standards, be evaluated every three years through a survey process, and maintains levels of excellence in the delivery of comprehensive patient-centered care.

Celebrating 10 years, the two-story, freestanding Cancer Center, has received outstanding patient satisfaction ratings from an independent survey done by Press Ganey. It offers chemotherapy, hematology, radiation, care management, and related support services. The Cancer Center is jointly operated by the not-for-profit Harrington HealthCare System and the for-profit 21st Century Oncology, which provides radiation oncology on the first floor of the building.

According to the CoC, “The Cancer Center at Harrington takes a multidisciplinary approach to treating cancer as a complex group of diseases. This requires consultation among surgeons, medical and radiation oncologists, diagnostic radiologists, pathologists, and other cancer specialists. This multidisciplinary partnership results in improved patient care.”

Additionally, according to the CoC, the accreditation program provides the framework for the Cancer Center at Harrington to improve its quality of patient care through various cancer-related programs that focus on the full spectrum of cancer care including prevention, early diagnosis, cancer staging, optimal treatment, rehabilitation, life-long follow-up for recurrent disease, and end-of-life care. When patients receive care at a CoC facility, they also have access to information on clinical trials and new treatments, genetic counseling, and patient-centered services, including psycho-social support, a patient navigation process, and a survivorship care plan that documents the care each patient receives and seeks to improve cancer survivors’ quality of life.

“The value of being CoC accredited is more than just being seen as a cutting-edge facility. An accredited facility offers benefits for the cancer program, the patient and their family as well as the community. Specific benefits include an organizational model for the delivery of comprehensive, multidisciplinary cancer care, data analysis and public awareness.” said Tracy Glacken, Operation Manager of The Cancer Center at Harrington.

As all CoC-accredited facilities, the Cancer Center at Harrington maintains a cancer registry and contributes data to the National Cancer Data Base (NCDB), a joint program of the CoC and American Cancer Society (ACS). This nationwide oncology outcomes database is the largest clinical disease registry in the world. Data on all types of cancer are tracked and analyzed through the NCDB and used to explore trends in cancer care. CoC-accredited cancer centers, in turn, have access to information derived from this type of data analysis, which is used to create national, regional, and state benchmark reports. These reports help CoC facilities with their quality improvement efforts.

About the CoC
The American Cancer Society estimates that more than 1.7 million cases of cancer will be diagnosed in 2018. There are currently more than 1,500 CoC-accredited cancer programs in the U.S. and Puerto Rico, CoC-accredited facilities diagnose and/or treat more than 70 percent of all newly diagnosed patients with cancer. When cancer patients choose to seek care locally at a CoC-accredited cancer center, they are gaining access to comprehensive, state-of-the-art cancer care close to home.

Established in 1922 by the American College of Surgeons, the CoC is a consortium of professional organizations dedicated to improving patient outcomes and quality of life for cancer patients through standard-setting, prevention, research, education, and the monitoring of comprehensive, quality care. Its membership includes Fellows of the American College of Surgeons.

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