Founded in 1988 on a personalized, patient-centered approach to cancer care, Cancer Treatment Centers of America® (CTCA) is dedicated to tailoring a combination of cancer treatments to the needs of each individual patient. From genomic tumor assessments to state-of-the-art technologies and evidence-based supportive therapies that target cancer-related side effects, comprehensive services are delivered by a team of cancer experts, all under one roof.
Inherent in this integrative approach is a commitment to personalized medicine, tapping breakthroughs in genomic testing, precision cancer treatment and other scientific advances to offer patients as many options as possible. Our oncologists, nurses and other clinicians offer a level of expertise that comes with working exclusively with cancer patients. Cancer treatment is all we do.
The modern era of cancer treatment is constantly evolving, with new breakthroughs and discoveries changing the course of care all the time. Deciding which combination of treatments is right for you is critical. It can also be overwhelming. That’s why it is important to turn to doctors who treat cancer, and only cancer.
The CTCA team of oncologists includes board-certified specialists with advanced training and expertise in many cancers—including breast, lung, prostate, colorectal, melanoma, throat, cervical, ovarian, pancreatic, lymphomas and more—as well as the wide array of treatment options available to fight them. These medical specialists are just some of the experts delivering comprehensive care at CTCA.
Each patient’s care team is assembled according to that patient’s needs. Some members of the care team, like the medical or radiation oncologist, are dedicated to treating the cancer. Others, such as the dietitian or the pain management physician, help the patient manage the side effects of cancer, to reduce the risk of treatment delays and improve quality of life.
CTCA® recognizes that no two cancer patients, and no two cancers, are exactly the same. Every patient’s care plan, from treating the disease to managing related side effects, is designed to meet his or her needs and treatment goals. Patients and their caregivers are involved every step of the way, empowered to make informed decisions about their care.
Each CTCA patient has a dedicated team of cancer experts assigned to his or her care, with some responsible for treating the cancer and others working to help the patient manage related side effects, like pain, nausea or malnutrition. Because all these doctors and clinicians work together in one location, they collaborate regularly with one another, and individually with the patient, to design a personalized plan, monitor patient progress and make adjustments when necessary.
Integrative cancer treatment
Cancer and its treatment can have a major impact on how you feel, function or look. Addressing those issues—early and persistently—can help you get back to your life, even as you battle the disease. That’s why an integrative, multi-faceted approach to cancer care is important. CTCA cancer experts treat the disease with advanced treatments and technologies, while also supporting patients’ strength, stamina and quality of life with a comprehensive array of evidence-based therapies, each tailored to their needs. That way, patients may be better able to maintain their treatment regimens, with fewer delays or interruptions.
The CTCA integrative care model works on two levels. Conventional treatments like chemotherapy, radiation therapy and immunotherapy are used to attack the cancer. At the same time, evidenced-based supportive therapies like naturopathic medicine, nutritional support and physical therapy help patients combat treatment-related side effects, to help them build the strength and stamina to fight the disease.
Cancer is a complex disease. Aside from the physical and emotional toll, patients may also find themselves juggling the many logistics involved in managing such a complicated journey. Keeping track of doctor appointments and treatment visits, collecting medical records, filling and refilling prescriptions, filing disability and other paperwork—the to-do list can seem endless. CTCA care managers play an important role in helping patients handle those responsibilities.
At CTCA, the care manager is the heart of the coordinated care model, a comprehensive, orchestrated approach to cancer care designed to see that patients’ needs are met while avoiding lapses in care. These health care professionals, all registered nurses trained and experienced in cancer care, are responsible for managing the patient’s schedule, coordinating communication among the care team, explaining medical jargon, answering questions as they arise and helping the patient and family navigate the cancer journey. At CTCA, our care managers are like personal nurses. They’re available onsite or via an around-the-clock hotline 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.
Precision cancer treatment
Today’s shift in thought and approach toward cancer treatment is toward truly individualized care, and at CTCA, that approach is a fundamental part of our treatment model. Traditional cancer treatments were designed for the average patient, recommended based on how successful they were in tests on a representative sample of patients with similar cancers. A deeper understanding of how cancer forms and grows has led to more targeted treatment options, especially for patients with rare or hard-to-treat cancers, or those whose tumors did not respond adequately to conventional treatments.
With the aid of the gene-mapping technology of advanced genomic tests, oncologists at CTCA in some cases are able to investigate a tumor at the molecular level, identify the abnormalities that drive its growth and behavior, and recommend treatment options that may not have otherwise been considered. Genomic testing is part of the CTCA commitment to personalized cancer care—using as many resources as possible to tailor treatment plans specific to each patient’s individual needs.
Expert, patient-centered care that integrates conventional, personalized treatment options with evidence-based therapies that support the whole person—before, during and after treatment: Those are the major pillars on which CTCA was founded. And they continue to drive us today, decades later.