Al­legheny, Johns Hop­kins part­ner on cancer care

Modern Healthcare - - REGIONAL NEWS - —Bob Her­man

Of­fi­cials at Al­legheny Health Net­work in Pitts­burgh and Johns Hop­kins Medicine in Bal­ti­more have rat­i­fied a fiveyear agree­ment to col­lab­o­rate on cancer care, re­search, ed­u­ca­tion and qual­ity im­prove­ment.

The agree­ment could spur cancer-care com­pe­ti­tion in the greater Pitts­burgh area. Al­legheny is part of High­mark, the Pitts­burgh-based health in­surer that be­came an in­te­grated de­liv­ery sys­tem af­ter ac­quir­ing eight-hospi­tal Al­legheny last year. Its pri­mary com­peti­tor, UPMC, has the re­gion’s only Na­tional Cancer In­sti­tute-des­ig­nated com­pre­hen­sive cancer cen­ter, one of the high­est recog­ni­tions for cancer care and re­search. Johns Hop­kins’ Sid­ney Kim­mel Com­pre­hen­sive Cancer Cen­ter also holds that des­ig­na­tion.

The deal, first an­nounced in Jan­uary, will al­low Johns Hop­kins and Al­legheny physi­cians to con­sult on rare cancer cases and new ther­a­pies. Also, an undis­closed amount of money will be made avail­able over the five years for physi­cians at each sys­tem to con­duct dis­cov­ery re­search. Con­tin­u­ing med­i­cal ed­u­ca­tion pro­grams for Al­legheny clin­i­cians and joint qual­ity and safety projects also will be de­vel­oped.

Pa­tients with the most com­plex cancer needs could be sent to Johns Hop­kins’ fa­cil­ity, but of­fi­cials said the Al­legheny Health Net­work Cancer In­sti­tute will be a pri­mary fo­cus for much of the col­lab­o­ra­tion.

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