New hope for cancer patients thanks to Upstate Cancer Center

Upstate Cancer Center

Cancer patients in Central New York now have access to a new facility to give them new hope.

A ribbon cutting ceremony was held Friday for the Upstate Cancer Center. It opens its doors to patients later this month. The 90,000 square foot facility on East Adams Street adjoins to Upstate University Hospital.

The $74 million facility will feature 27 infusion chairs, 4 linear accelerator vaults for radiation therapy, a high-tech intraoperative suite, which includes a 3T MRI, a four-season rooftop healing garden, meditation room and family resources center.

It also includes multidisciplinary practice locations and private space for genetic, financial and nutrition counseling services. "In our biomedical research, and our training of tomorrow's health care professionals, and now with the new Upstate Cancer Center, Upstate Medical University recommits itself in the fight against cancer," said Dr. Gregory Eastwood, interim president of Upstate Medical University. "This facility represents an investment in our region's health, and partnership with the community who supported so generously our call to give hope a new home. For sons and daughters, moms and dads and all our loved ones, this facility represents the hope of a cancer-free tomorrow."

Heather Gangemi was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma at the age of 14. She underwent chemotherapy and radiation, and is now a proud pediatric cancer survivor. "The access to new technology, the research that's going to go on there, the services for patients is just astounding. I plan on roaming the halls of this facility for years and years to come not as a patient but as a proud survivor," Gangemi said.

The Cancer Center features new technology to treat lung, liver and prostate cancer. The Vero SBRT (Sterotactic Body Radiotherapy System) facilitates the delivery of extremely high doses of radiation to complex tumors located in critical areas while protecting neighboring organs, improving both safety and accuracy. TrueBeam, an advanced radiotherapy option lessons treatment time. It is one of three institutions in the country to offer the combination of advanced treatment and imaging technologies. "The needs of our patients, both adult and child, and their families were a driving force behind the development and design of the Upstate Cancer Center," said Dr. John McCabe, CEO of Upstate University Hospital. "We have put most of our outpatient cancer services in a setting that promotes healing and gave our health care team some of the most advanced cancer-fighting technology available with one goal in mind: to save lives."

The total cost of the five-story building is $100 million. The cost of construction is being financed by the issuance of bonds that will be repaid with revenues generated by the Cancer Center. Some of the construction and equipment costs were aided by a campaign called "Give Hope a New Home," which raised $17.4 million from more than 18,400 gifts and pledges.

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