AHN Opens $35 Million Cancer and Imaging Center at Forbes Hospital
Wednesday, February 13, 2019
MONROEVILLE, PA – Highmark Health and Allegheny Health Network (AHN) today cut the ribbon to a new $35 million, 63,000 square foot cancer and imaging center at Forbes Hospital. The first facility of its kind in Pittsburgh’s east suburbs, the center offers patients convenient access to closely coordinated, multi-disciplinary cancer and imaging care under one roof.
The AHN Forbes Outpatient Center, featuring the AHN Cancer Institute and AHN Imaging Institute, provides cancer patients access to advanced medical and radiation oncology care, cancer clinical trials, state-of-the-art diagnostic imaging care and comprehensive support services. Located on the Forbes campus off Route 48 (Haymaker Road) in Monroeville, the center is open to any patient in need of imaging services such as MRI, X-ray and CT.
“Forbes Hospital has been a leading source of high quality health care in Pittsburgh’s east suburban communities for more than four decades,” said Mark Rubino, MD, President, Forbes Hospital. “With our many significant investments in new facilities and advanced capabilities over the past several years, that legacy has been strengthened considerably as our patient volumes and the demand for more specialized, close to home health services in our community continue to grow.”
The new Forbes cancer and imaging facility is part of a $300 million commitment by Highmark Health and AHN to improve and expand access to leading-edge cancer care in western Pennsylvania. It’s one of several community based cancer centers that AHN will open this year, including locations in Westmoreland, Butler, Beaver and Erie Counties.
AHN is also building a new Academic Cancer Center at Allegheny General Hospital that will serve as a base for education, research, clinical trials, and care coordination among experts throughout the community cancer network and academic centers at AGH, West Penn Hospital, and Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center. AHN’s expanded relationship with Johns Hopkins offers patients at all 23 AHN Cancer Institute treatment locations throughout the region streamlined access to second opinions, clinical trials, novel treatments and technologies.
“At AHN, we believe that cancer patients and their families deserve to have the most convenient access possible to comprehensive, high-quality clinical services,” said Cynthia Hundorfean, AHN’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “We are excited to achieve that vision at Forbes with this beautiful new facility, bringing an outstanding level of cancer and imaging care to our patients in Pittsburgh’s east suburbs.”
As part of the AHN Cancer Institute, the new facility at Forbes will provide a wide array of clinical and support services for cancer patients, including state-of-the-art radiation oncology capabilities, medical oncology and infusion therapy, advanced imaging, nutritional counseling, and social services. Patients also have local access to many of the cancer clinical trials being coordinated by the network’s quaternary hospitals, AGH and West Penn, and Johns Hopkins.
The new center’s imaging capabilities include PET scans, MRI, CT scans, X-rays, nuclear and ultrasound imaging – all of the advanced modalities that a cancer patient may need during the course of treatment and survivorship. The center is staffed by approximately 100 employees, with more than 30 new hires.
Designed to enhance patient comfort, the center features abundant natural light and soft colors to create a calming and comfortable environment for patients and their families. By integrating diagnostic and treatment modalities in one building, patients are afforded a seamless care experience.
“Our goal is to create a truly patient-centered clinical environment that’s not ‘institutional,’ where patients aren’t spending long periods of time in waiting rooms,” Dr. Rubino said. “We want patients to be able to walk in and proceed directly to the treatment area, so they are able to return to the comfort of their home as soon as possible.”
As the U.S. population continues to grow older and more diverse, the number of cancer diagnoses is rising. About 1.7 million new cancer cases – 81,000 in Pennsylvania alone - are expected to be diagnosed in 2018, a two percent hike from 2015, according to the American Cancer Society. In addition, the number of cancer survivors in the U.S. is expected to rise from 15.5 million to 20.3 million in 2026. The need for better cancer screening, treatment and surveillance will increase accordingly.
“Investing in more services to care for our patients closer to where they live is critical to addressing the escalating cancer care needs of the western Pennsylvania community in the most effective and affordable manner, today and in the future,” said David Parda, MD, Chair, AHN Cancer Institute. “We now often treat cancer as a chronic disease, and see patients through many years of survivorship. We don’t want our patients to spend time traveling to appointments – we want them to spend time with their loved ones, and to stay focused on their overall health. At the new Forbes facility they will get the same advanced care and leading expertise they would expect at any AHN Cancer Institute location.”
The new center is less than a mile from the Pennsylvania Turnpike, Route 376, and Route 22, providing easy access to patients not only from Monroeville but also Westmoreland County and all neighborhoods and suburbs located east of the city of Pittsburgh.