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Our Commitment to Cancer Care

In 2016, Hartford HealthCare hired Dr. Peter Yu, the former director of cancer research at the Palo Alto Medical Foundation in California and a nationally recognized cancer expert, as the Cancer Institute’s first physician-in-chief. The arrival of Dr. Yu, a former president of the of the American Society of Clinical Oncology that represents 40,000 professionals in all cancer subspecialties, was a logical second step in a profound change in the way we approach treatment at the Cancer Institute.

It started in 2014, when the Cancer Institute became the first member of the Memorial Sloan Kettering Alliance, sharing treatment methods with the famed New York City cancer treatment center. More than 500 doctors from both health-care systems collaborated for a year to develop close to 300 measurable standards of care in six disease specialties: breast, colorectal, kidney, lung, prostate and uterine. Now you can receive that standardized care, close to your home and your loved ones, and also participate (if eligible) in clinical trials initiated by Memorial Sloan Kettering as part of its ongoing cancer research.

Dr. Yu brings to the Cancer Institute’s five hospitals – Hartford Hospital, The Hospital of Central Connecticut, Backus Hospital, MidState Medical Center and Windham Hospital -- a commitment to interpreting results not just from clinical trials but from all cancer patients, which is now available through electronic records.

“We know that treatment is not uniform and full of variation,” he said in an interview with the Annals of Translational Medicine. “So the electronic health records will be a way for us to better capture what people are doing, why they are doing it and what is happening, as well as a tool to extend this knowledge to other doctors and patients.”

Now, he says, “I would like to see the Cancer Institute be at the forefront in this area.”

People recognize our commitment. In 2017, the Cancer Institute was accredited by the American College of Surgeons’ Commission on Cancer, one of a select few institutes nationwide recognized as a system rather than an individual cancer centers.

The Cancer Institute treats about 6,000 new cancer cases each year. It takes a broad team of medical professionals to treat such a complex disease, even more than our fellowship-trained physicians, surgeons and oncology-certified nurses.

A nurse navigator assures you will have an advocate, even after you leave the hospital, who will help provide information about your disease and treatment, manage side effects, assist with insurance issues, provide basic nutritional advice and offer emotional support.

Every day, people like you decide the Hartford HealthCare Cancer Institute is the best place to get the care you need.

Cancer Care