Miami Cancer Institute Opens Its Doors

AURTHOR  Georgi Morales Pipkin
Comprehensive cancer center and clinical research facility will be Florida’s only member of the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Alliance and the first in South Florida to offer proton therapy.  MIAMI, FL – January 26, 2017 – Today, the $430 million, 445,000-square-foot Miami Cancer Institute, part of Baptist Health South Florida, has officially opened its doors.

In addition, after a year-long review and collaboration process, Miami Cancer Institute has become the third full member, and the only member in Florida, of the Memorial Sloan Kettering (MSK) Cancer Alliance, an initiative designed to collaboratively guide community providers toward state-of-the-art cancer care. 

Miami Cancer Institute features a unique, hybrid academic-community cancer center model backed by 30 years of Baptist Health’s expertise in cancer care. The facility, located on the Baptist Hospital campus, consolidates many outpatient clinical services, clinical research, and technology platforms under one roof. The Institute is home to one of the most comprehensive and advanced radiation oncology programs in the world, including South Florida’s first proton therapy center, one of under two dozen proton therapy centers in the nation, which will open later this year. The precision of proton therapy allows doctors to target cancer cells without damaging healthy tissue and vital organs.

“Miami Cancer Institute brings new treatment options, cutting-edge technology and pioneering clinical research to South Florida, including access to Memorial Sloan Kettering’s world-renowned clinical trials and standards of care,” said Michael J. Zinner, M.D., Founding CEO and Executive Medical Director of Miami Cancer Institute. “This collaboration – when combined with our team of preeminent cancer experts working together to develop the best care plans for each patient – establishes Miami Cancer Institute as the region’s premier, hybrid academic-community cancer center.”

“We are proud and privileged to open the doors of Miami Cancer Institute for our community,” said Brian E. Keeley, President and CEO of Baptist Health South Florida. “We thank the hundreds of people who have worked tirelessly to build this world-class destination cancer center here in South Florida. This historic milestone is not just one for Baptist Health to celebrate, but one for our entire community as we come together in the fight against cancer.”

As an MSK Cancer Alliance member, Miami Cancer Institute will share educational resources with MSK and other members, which include Connecticut’s Hartford HealthCare Cancer Institute and Pennsylvania’s Lehigh Valley Health Network Cancer Institute. The dynamic and forward-thinking relationship will enhance the Institute’s clinical research capabilities as well as its delivery of world-class, evidence-based cancer care. There are three key ways patients receiving care at Miami Cancer Institute directly benefit from this unique relationship:

  • Adoption of MSK standards of care into everyday practice. By keeping up to date with the latest innovations, Miami Cancer Institute clinical experts make treatment decisions for their patients based on the best and most current evidence available.
  • Integrated learning. Oncologists from both institutions regularly meet to discuss challenging cases and identify the best course of treatment for patients.
  • Access to key MSK clinical trials. Cancer clinical trials can give patients the opportunity to receive drugs or therapies years before they are available anywhere else. Plans are under way to open several MSK trials at Miami Cancer Institute as early as this month. Opening these MSK trials helps speed up the data-collection process so investigational therapies can be approved faster and become available sooner to even more patients.

“For more than a century, Memorial Sloan Kettering has relentlessly sought to eradicate cancer through scientific discovery and exceptional, patient-focused care,” said Craig B. Thompson, MD, President and CEO of MSK. “This goal will only be realized through collaborative sharing of knowledge and best practices with like-minded partners, such as Miami Cancer Institute, while learning from them as well. This new model of collaboration will continue to evolve but will always benefit patients first and foremost by making the highest-quality cancer care widely accessible.”

The Institute’s clinical research building is expected to open later this year. It will house the Center for Genomic Medicine, where researchers will study the tumors of individual patients at the molecular level and create personalized treatments that interrupt the cancer cells’ ability to multiply. These targeted therapies are among the most effective and promising treatments under development.

Miami Cancer Institute expects to draw a significant number of patients from outside the United States and will attract leading medical and business professionals to South Florida for conferences, symposia and other events. The Hilton Miami-Dadeland – a 184-room, full-service hotel and conference center – is due to open on the west end of the Baptist Hospital campus in late 2018 and will be an essential component to serving out-of-town patients and guests visiting the Cancer Institute.

“Even in its infancy, Miami Cancer Institute has transformed cancer care in South Florida,” said Dr. Zinner. “As it matures, the Institute is well-poised to serve as the catalyst for making South Florida a true, world-class medical destination that benefits patients and the community at large – here, and around the globe.”

Note: Photos and video footage from tonight’s Miami Cancer Institute Grand Opening Celebration are now live in the Newsroom.
Newsroom. BaptistHealth.net/MiamiCancerInstitute

For more information about the Miami Cancer Institute including photos, B-roll and SOTS, visit our newsroom atNewsroom.BaptistHealth.net/MiamiCancerInstitute.

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