The Carle Cancer Center and two other Illinois health providers will share nearly $30 million in federal funding to support clinical trials in the communities—bringing more clinical research as a care option in Illinois.

The News-Gazette reports that the six-year National Cancer Institute Oncology Research Program (NCORP) grant will bring innovative, advanced cancer treatments directly into communities in Illinois. This year Carle Cancer Center will receive $1.36 million.

Carle Cancer Center

With nearly 100 clinical trials ongoing, it has been a significant supporter of clinical research as a way for cancer prevention, control screening, and post-treatment surveillance.

Carle Cancer Center is the premier cancer treatment and support center in east-central Illinois, offering more resources to help patients in the fight against cancer. With the area’s largest and most specialized team of fellowship-trained oncologists, surgeons, and staff, patients get in for diagnosis and start treatment as soon as possible. Our team offers the latest technology and highly specialized multidisciplinary clinics for certain cancers, including breast, prostate, gynecologic, and head and neck. But we don’t just treat disease – we care for the whole patient, offering eight support groups, genetic and nutrition counseling, nurse navigator services and more.

Betsy Barnick, clinical trials manager, the Carle Mills Breast Cancer Institute reports “Additional funding allows us to expand clinical trial participation in more rural and underserved areas. We can also develop new trials to better understand cancer care delivery to better support patients and families.” “The ability to reach more patients broadens the impact of the research not just for them but for generations who follow.”

History of Carle

Carle Foundation and Carle Physician Group have offered high-quality health care since 1918 when Margaret But Carle left $40,000 to the City of Urbana, Ill to start a hospital. The donation led to the creation of the Urbana Memorial Hospital Association. Back in 1931, J.C. Thomas Rogers and Hugh L. Davison, two physicians from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN moved to Urbana and opened what was then called Carle Memorial Hospital and the Rogers-Davison Clinic. The clinic and 15-bed hospital introduced the concept of the multi-specialty group practice to the area.

The hospital and clinic have been separated then reunited in 2010 and continue to offer high-quality health care. Today known as Carle, Carle Foundation Hospital and Carle Physician Group offers a range of health services for residents of east-central Illinois.

Other Illinois Providers Receiving NCORP Clinical Trials Funding

Heartland Cancer Research at Decatur Memorial Hospital received $2.76 million for 2019 totaling $16.5 million for six years. Also, Stoger Hospital of Cook County, Chicago received $833,400 for 2019 with a total of $5 million.

Heartland Cancer Research at Decatur Memorial Hospital (DMH)

Located in Decatur, Ill, this 300 bed, not-for-profit community hospital has been providing medical care since 1916 for the residents of Central Illinois. Today DMH employs more than 2,300 including 300 physicians. It has been recognized for nine years as a Top 50 Cardiovascular Hospital from IBM Watson Health.

The Heartland Cancer Research National Community Oncology Research Program (Heartland NCORP) was formed in 2013 through the cooperative efforts of three community cancer research programs (CCOPs): Missouri Baptist Heartland CCOP from St. Louis; Illinois Cancer Care CCOP from Peoria, IL and the Central Illinois CCOP from Decatur, IL. These three nationally recognized community cancer programs each brought to the new Heartland NCORP a strong committed network of cancer doctors, nurses, and administrators. This collaboration combined with Heartland NCORP offers state-of-the-art National Cancer Institute supported clinical trials to 124 counties with a population of 7 million across five states.

Heartland Cancer Center has earned the QOPI Certification, ACR Accreditation, and houses the only Nationally Accredited Breast Cancer Center (NAPBC) west of Topeka, Kansas, and east of Denver, Colorado—The Breast Center at St. Catherine Hospital

Stoger Hospital Cook County

Stoger Hospital Cook County is part of Cook County Health and includes two hospitals (Stoger) and Provident Hospital, as well as a robust network of more than a dozen community health centers, the Ruth M. Rothstein CORE Center, the Cook County Department of Public Health, Cermak Health Services, which offers health care to individuals at the Cook County Jail and the Juvenile Temporary Detention Center and CountyCare, a Medicaid managed health care plan.

Clinical Research as a Care Option in Illinois

Thanks to NCORP and Illinois provider quality of care and performance key community institutions continue to receive much-needed funding for community-based cancer clinical trials. Many patients in Illinois will now have the opportunity to take advance of what can be live extending and potentially life-saving investigational treatments for cancer.

Call to Action: If you are based in Illinois and are facing a cancer diagnosis think about contacting one of the providers listed in this article. TrialSite News matching service can help you find the right contact at no cost (TrialSite Network). If you are a commercial sponsor and/or CRO and are interested in conducting clinical trials in the Midwest these community providers should be considered.

Source: The News-Gazette

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