Norfolk –December 6, 2013: The Commission on Cancer (CoC) of the American College of Surgeons (ACoS) has granted another Three-Year Accreditation with Commendation to the cancer program at Faith Regional Health Services. To earn voluntary CoC accreditation, a cancer program must meet or exceed 34 CoC quality care standards, be evaluated every three years through a survey process, and maintain levels of excellence in the delivery of comprehensive patient-centered care. Three-Year Accreditation with Commendation is only awarded to a facility that exceeds standard requirements at the time of its triennial survey. Faith Regional received its first Three-Year Accreditation with Commendation in 2010.
“Due to the extraordinary hard work and team spirit of our staff, we were able to achieve this important accreditation for our Center and ultimately our patients,” said Dr. Mohammed Zahra, radiation oncologist at the Faith Regional Carson Cancer Center.
Because it is a CoC-accredited cancer center, Faith Regional takes a multidisciplinary approach to treating cancer as a complex group of diseases that requires consultation among surgeons, medical and radiation oncologists, diagnostic radiologists, pathologists, and other cancer specialists. This multidisciplinary partnership results in improved patient care.
“I am very proud of our team of cancer care providers here at Faith Regional,” said Dr. Thomas Beutler, general surgeon at Faith Regional and chairman of the Faith Regional Cancer Committee. “The Commission on Cancer Accreditation with commendation verifies our high level of expertise and commitment in providing comprehensive cancer care right here at home.”
The CoC Accreditation Program provides the framework for Faith Regional 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.
Like all CoC-accredited facilities, Faith Regional 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.
ACS estimates that more than 1.6 million cases of cancer will be diagnosed in 2013. There are currently more than 1,500 CoC-accredited cancer programs in the U.S. and Puerto Rico, representing 30 percent of all hospitals. CoC-accredited facilities diagnose and/or treat more than 70 percent of all newly diagnosed cancer patients. 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.