Thursday, July 18, 2024
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CRMC & Vanderbilt Celebrate Ribbon Cutting

Cookeville Regional Medical Center and Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center celebrated their new partnership with a ribbon cutting Wednesday.

Through the agreement, Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center will send medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, and advanced practice nurses to Cookeville Regional. Dr. Ben Park is Director of Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center.

“The research that has data, has shown us the more you complete your therapies the faster you get diagnosed and then get on the proper therapies the better the outcomes,” Park said. “So we want to make sure that no one has to wait, no one has to travel, that they can actually get the care that they deserve right in their own backyard, so that’s a big part of our mission and why we are so thrilled to partner with Cookeville.”

Park said it is Vanderbilt’s mission to provide the latest research, medications, clinical trials, and diagnostics to the Upper Cumberland and its residents.

“One of the things that we’ve realized is that even though a lot of what we do in terms of research is on our main campus ultimately the people we serve are everywhere beyond that, or not I should say only the people beyond that,” Park said. “But that is probably the largest group of individuals that as an NCI-designated comprehensive center that we serve. You know, we are funded by the public being NCI designated, so in my mind, it makes perfect sense that we have to be really proactive to get the latest discoveries, and the latest therapies, and diagnostic testing out to the community.”

Park said the partnership discussions began several months ago when Cookeville Regional CEO Buffy Key reached out to him.

“The relationship that we built almost from the instant Buffy and I started talking to one another was one of trust and one of mutual shared interests,” Park said. “And that’s really to bring as I was saying earlier, the best latest state of the arc cancer care to the citizens of Cookeville.”

Vanderbilt already began sending staff to CRMC earlier in the month. Key said the patient volume has increased and the partnership has been fantastic.

“I say that it’s fantastic, I hate it that anyone has cancer obviously,” Key said. “But just the fact that we are here for them. Vanderbilt is working very very hard on recruiting even more physicians and more advanced practiced nurses for our community so that they will live here and be a part of our community.”

The incoming Vanderbilt staff will not affect the current staff at CRMC.

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