Saint John Medical Center is celebrating a new partnership with one of the premier cancer centers in the world. On Tuesday morning the hospital announced it's collaboration with MD Anderson Cancer Network. St. John is the first and only hospital in Oklahoma to become a certified member of the MD Anderson Cancer Network.
"The name MD Anderson cares with it clinical excellence. It cares with it a name that's known worldwide," said Jeff Nowlin, President, Chief Operating Ofc. at St. John Medical Center.
Only 13 hospitals in the country are certified members of the MD Anderson Network.
Nowlin said the partnership gives cancer patients living in Oklahoma and parts of Kansas, Missouri and Arkansas access to additional cancer care services and expertise.
"Our physicians who are participating in the network will be certified and are certified by MD Anderson and our partnership allows us the access to second opinions. The very best in terms of clinical guidelines and protocols," Nowlin said.
William Murphy with the MD Anderson Network said teaming up with St. John will help fulfill the mission of eliminating cancer.
"So our job is to personalize the cancer care and to bring the expertise from Houston to Tulsa where you have individuals who need a kind of cancer care that is not available now. So we will help with that. We will give advice, we will talk to the physicians," Murphy said.
The partnership also gives local cancer patients the opportunity to stay close to home.
"When you are going through something as terrible as cancer and the treatment of cancer itself, you want to be close to home, you want to be with your family. And if you are able to work and receive treatment at the same time then it will allow them to stay closer to home rather than go out of state and have that expense," said Governor Mary Fallin.