Central Maine Medical Center
My Health LinkFor Healthcare Professionals OnlyFollow UsFacebookTwitterYouTube
300 Main Street, Lewiston, ME 04240 | 207-795-0111

Central Maine Healthcare Partnering with Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center

The resources of one of the world's top cancer programs are now available to patients being treated at Central Maine Healthcare hospitals and Parkview Adventist Medical Center.

Central Maine Healthcare (CMH) and the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) Cancer Center have developed a collaborative program that is already connecting patients from central, western and mid-coast Maine to cancer care subspecialists in Boston.

CMH is comprised of Central Maine Medical Center, Bridgton Hospital and Rumford Hospital. Parkview Adventist Medical Center in Brunswick is also associated with CMH.

"Central Maine Medical Center has an excellent cancer care program. We provide medical, surgical and radiation oncology, and support a dedicated breast care center. We also developed The Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope and Healing which provides free support, outreach and wellness services to anyone affected by cancer," said CMH President and CEO Peter E. Chalke.

"However," he added, "when a patient requires services of a top academic cancer center, the Mass General connection allows us to quickly and effectively get care for these patients at a world renowned cancer program. The system is so well organized that patients needing this additional level of care are astonished at how quickly and seamlessly it can be delivered."

Chalke said that MGH cancer care subspecialists are already providing care for patients and participating in cancer care conferences and planning educational activities at CMMC in Lewiston.

David Ryan, M.D., Clinical Director at the MGH Cancer Center and chief of hematology-oncology at MGH, said, "Mass General is committed to providing everyone in New England access to the best care and technology. The world of cancer medicine is rapidly changing and our relationship with Central Maine Healthcare allows for their patients to have access to the best possible outcomes when it comes to cancer treatments."

"Patients living in the Bridgton, Rumford and greater Brunswick area now have immediate access to one of the finest cancer treatment programs in America," Chalke added. "We are very pleased that our physicians and the MGH cancer providers are working together as a team to provide the highest quality care for our patients."

CMH's cancer care providers have lauded the affiliation with the Boston healthcare leader. "This is the best service I have ever received from a quaternary care hospital," said David C. Caldwell, M.D., a medical oncologist with Hematology-Oncology Associates in Lewiston. "I sent a patient down this week and literally five minutes after the patient was seen, I had a phone call from a doc letting me know his opinion and the plan. I have had the same experience with other patients I have referred. They either call me or email me immediately."

Lewiston-based Hematology-Oncology Associates Manager Kathleen Vieira said the affiliation so effectively streamlines the process of getting appropriate patients connected to MGH cancer subspecialists that they are sometimes seen within 24 hours of being referred. As importantly, she concludes, once a patient has received specialty services at MGH, necessary follow-up services are provided at CMMC, whenever possible.

For most cancer patients, CMMC can provide all the diagnostic and treatment services a patient requires. However, a relatively small population of patients require care not available locally, these patients are the ones who benefit from care at MGH.

"The communication between MGH and CMMC is comprehensive and immediate," said Vieira. "We know what's going on with any patient we refer to Mass General before the patient is back home in Maine. The system is working very well and our patients have been very satisfied."

Massachusetts General Hospital has treatment programs for some 38 different cancers and a host of support programs. In addition, the hospital's transportation system greatly eases the burden of travel for Maine patients.

Vieira said that in addition to the clinical services, communications and transportation systems linking the two hospitals, MGH will soon offer some of its ground-breaking services such as genotyping for identifying cancers that may be treated with "smart drugs". Also available to appropriate patients are clinical trial treatments with new medications and treatment systems.

About The Massachusetts General Hospital

Founded in 1811, the MGH is the third oldest general hospital in the United States and the oldest and largest in New England. The 900-bed medical center offers sophisticated diagnostic and therapeutic care in virtually every specialty and subspecialty of medicine and surgery. Each year the MGH admits more than 46,000 inpatients and handles nearly 1.5 million outpatient visits at its main campus and health centers. Its Emergency Department records nearly 80,000 visits annually. The surgical staff performs more than 35,000 operations and the MGH Vincent Obstetrics Service delivers more than 3,500 babies each year. The MGH conducts the largest hospital-based research program in the country, with an annual research budget of approximately $500 million. It is the oldest and largest teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School, where nearly all MGH staff physicians serve on the faculty. The MGH is consistently ranked among the nation's top hospitals by US News and World Report. For more information, visit www.massgeneral.org

About Central Maine Healthcare

Central Maine Healthcare (CMH) is the organizational parent of a family of premier healthcare organizations serving western, central and coastal Maine. Major affiliates of CMHC are Central Maine Medical Center, Bridgton Hospital, Rumford Hospital, Central Maine Medical Center College of Nursing and Health Professions, Central Maine Medical Group and long-term care facilities, clinics and physician practices. Collectively they provide healthcare services, health professions training and clinical research opportunities in the Lewiston-Auburn area, the second largest population center in Maine, and across a huge region of predominantly rural communities. CMHC is a major employer with over 4,000 employees working at locations throughout the region. Last summer CMMC was named Maine's safest hospital by Consumer Reports. Leapfrog Group recently designated CMMC as the state's Top Urban Hospital and Rumford Hospital as one of the state's Top Rural Hospitals. For more information, visit www.cmmc.org