BIDDEFORD – The Cancer Committee at Southern Maine Health Care has released its Annual Cancer Program Report, with a focus on the important investments SMHC made in its Cancer Care program in 2016.

“Comprehensive cancer treatment is among the most important services Southern Maine Health Care provides to our community,” said Director of SMHC’s Cancer Care Service Line William Perron, RN. “In 2016 we made significant investments in the latest radiation technology, oncology staff, and services to ensure that our patients continue to receive outstanding cancer care close to home.”

At the Cancer Care Center of York County, which is a collaboration between Maine Medical Center and SMHC, Maine’s newest radiation equipment was installed to ensure that patients can receive cutting edge care at York County’s only radiation treatment center.

With a focus on providing care that embodies a holistic approach to meet the unique needs of each patient, services at SMHC’s Cancer Care and Blood Disorders practices were expanded to include: genetic counseling, licensed clinical social work, phlebotomy (through NorDx) and dietitian services. SMHC also implemented a new screening process to identify patients who would benefit from rehabilitation therapies at points along their continuum of care.

SMHC’s Cancer Care staff also grew to meet the needs of the community. SMHC welcomed oncology nurse practitioner Beth Hart, PA-C; genetic counselor Katherine Lafferty, MS, CGC; and oncology nurse navigator Jennifer Chatfield, RN, BSN, OCN. The nurse navigator position is being funded by a three-year grant from the Maine Cancer Foundation.

In addition to guiding patients through treatment, Chatfield is helping SMHC launch a lung cancer screening program. In 2017 two more experienced providers are joining SMHC’s Cancer Care team, general surgeon Cynthia Chao, MD – who specializes in breast surgery – and medical oncologist Luiz De Oliveira, MD.

The Cancer Committee at SMHC is comprised of medical professionals who work to ensure SMHC’s Cancer Program meets the rigorous requirements of accreditation for prevention, detection and treatment.

In 2015, SMHC’s Cancer Care program was reaccredited with commendation by the Commission on Cancer (CoC) and SMHC’s Center for Breast Care was reaccredited by the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers (NAPBC). These accreditations are the highest level awarded for cancer care programs in the United States.

SMHC’s Cancer Care Annual report is available online at http://www.smhc.org/uploads/files/2016_SMHC_Cancer_Report.pdf.

Southern Maine Health Care is a national award-winning healthcare system with a non-profit mission “to improve the health and health care of the communities we serve.”  SMHC includes a full service, acute care medical center in Biddeford, with York County’s only inpatient mental health unit.

Emergency care, surgical services, and diagnostic and therapy services are available at SMHC’s Medical Centers in Biddeford and Sanford. SMHC offers primary care and multi-specialty physician services, diagnostic and therapy services, and Walk-In Care centers in various York County communities including Biddeford, Kennebunk, Saco, Sanford and Waterboro.

SMHC is Joint Commission accredited and has been recognized for quality excellence by numerous outside organizations.

To learn more about SMHC and SMHC providers, visit www.smhc.org, https://www.youtube.com/c/smhcorgme, or https://twitter.com/SMHCHealth.