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Fox Chase Cancer Center is one of the leading cancer research and treatment centers in the United States. Founded in 1904 in Philadelphia as American Oncologic Hospital – one of the nation's first cancer hospitals—Fox Chase was also among the first institutions to be designated a National Cancer Institute Comprehensive Cancer Center in 1974. The Center was formed earlier that year by the union of American Oncologic Hospital and the Institute for Cancer Research (founded in 1927). Fox Chase later became part of Temple University Health System in July 2012, bringing together two of Philadelphia's most celebrated Institutions.
Fox Chase conducts a broad array of nationally competitive basic, translational, and clinical research, with special programs in cancer prevention, detection, survivorship, and community outreach. The Center's 100-bed hospital is one of the few facilities in the country devoted entirely to cancer care. Fox Chase sees more than 8,400 new patients a year. Annual hospital admissions total more than 4,800 and outpatient visits to physicians are more than 88,400 a year. U.S. News & World Report consistently ranks Fox Chase among the best cancer-care facilities in the nation.
Fox Chase offers a number of multidisciplinary treatment options to patients with all types of cancers, including rare and difficult-to-manage tumors. Specialists at Fox Chase are recognized nationally and internationally in medical, radiation, and surgical oncology; diagnostic imaging; diagnostic pathology; pain management; oncology nursing; and social work.
- Fox Chase is well-known for developing three-dimensional conformal radiation therapy (3D-CRT) and was the first in the Philadelphia region to use intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT). Fox Chase was also first in the region to offer the Calypso 4-D Localization System, Trilogy Stereotactic System, magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS, or functional MRI) and 4-D CT treatment simulator—all tools to aid in delivering the most targeted radiation therapy. In addition, Fox Chase was the first in the world to use MRI in radiation treatment planning.
- Fox Chase offers the broadest range of minimally invasive treatment options for cancer surgery. Fox Chase surgeons specialize in da Vinci robot-assisted surgery for more types of cancers, including prostate, kidney, bladder, colon, head and neck, gynecologic, and lung cancers, than many other hospitals across the country. Fox Chase is also one of only a handful of places in the nation to offer advanced laparoscopic and minimally invasive techniques for patients with cancers of the liver, pancreas, bile ducts, and gallbladder. In addition, Fox Chase offers transoral laser surgery to treat patients with hard-to-reach tumors of the head and neck. Fox Chase surgeons are highly skilled in using video-assisted thoracic surgery (VATS), a minimally invasive option for patients with lung cancer and other tumors of the chest.
- State-of-the-art surgical facilities and services include eight operating rooms; microvascular and reconstructive surgery; endoscopy unit; laser surgery and cryosurgery technology; CT-guided biopsy and stereotactic breast-biopsy technology; full anesthesia capabilities; pre-surgical/post-anesthesia care unit; and an eight-bed intensive care unit.
- Fox Chase's broad-based program of clinical research includes trials of new prevention, diagnostic and treatment techniques. About 200 clinical trials are under way at any one time. Fox Chase is also involved in developing trials to test new agents that may prevent cancer in high-risk individuals and is an active participant in national cancer prevention studies.
In 2010, Fox Chase opened the Robert C. Young, MD, Pavilion, dedicated in honor of the Center's former president, who served from 1989 to 2007. This state-of-the-art facility encompasses 224,000 square feet of space and houses the Women's Cancer Center, the department of radiation oncology, the research program in cancer prevention and control, and the Institute for Personalized Medicine.
Fox Chase scientists and physicians have long collaborated together in conducting clinical research, basic laboratory research and population research. Combining research in many disciplines with patient care enables Fox Chase to translate new research findings into medical applications that may become models for improved cancer care. In February 2008, Fox Chase launched the Keystone Programs for Collaborative Discovery, a suite of innovative team-based cancer research programs. At the heart of each Keystone Program is a self-organized group of scientists, clinicians, and other research professionals seeking to focus their joined expertise on a major question in cancer. The goal of this team-based, thematic research approach is to accelerate the pace of medical progress against cancer.
Fox Chase has about 2,400 employees and an operating budget of $360,141,400 for fiscal year 2012. Research is conducted in more than 90 laboratories by a staff of 358 physicians and scientists who hold MDs, PhDs, or both. Investigators at Fox Chase have received many awards and honors, including Nobel Prizes in medicine and chemistry, a Kyoto Prize in Basic Sciences, a Lasker Clinical Research Award, American Cancer Society Medals of Honor, memberships in the National Academy of Sciences, and induction into the National Inventors Hall of Fame.
As an institution, the Center also has achieved many distinctions, including accreditation by the American College of Surgeons' Commission on Cancer with commendation and Magnet status for nursing excellence from the American Nurses Credentialing Center. Fox Chase became the nation's first comprehensive cancer center and Pennsylvania's first hospital to earn Magnet status in September 2000 and has since earned re-designation in 2004, and again in 2009, to become the first institution in Pennsylvania to achieve this distinction three consecutive times. In addition, the department of radiation oncology is accredited by the American College of Radiology, a distinction showing that Fox Chase meets the highest national quality standards for radiation treatment. Finally, Fox Chase's Women's Cancer Center is accredited by the American College of Radiology as a Breast Imaging Center of Excellence, as well as by the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers (NAPBC).
Fox Chase has had established partnerships with community hospitals in the region since 1986. The Fox Chase Cancer Center Partners program now includes 19 hospitals in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. This program has been successful in raising the quality of cancer care in the community and increasing the number of patients enrolled in clinical trials. The program also includes Fox Chase Cancer Center Consultants, by which a team of oncologists, business strategists, and other professionals provides information on how Fox Chase developed the Partners program, services offered, and other operational issues.
Fox Chase is a founding member of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network. The Center's participation in NCCN includes representation on its Board of Directors. In addition, many Fox Chase physicians are members or leaders of the NCCN's Guidelines panels. The NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology (NCCN Guidelines®)—the recognized standard of care in cancer treatment—offer the most comprehensive and up-to-date treatment guidelines in medicine. Fox Chase also takes part in cancer outcome studies for many types of cancers, including lymphoma, breast, colorectal, lung, and ovarian cancers.