Ochsner Health and St. Tammany Health System Celebrate Cancer Center Grand Opening
New $50 million facility increases access to high-quality cancer services
Today, Ochsner Health and St. Tammany Health System celebrated the grand opening of the new cancer center following the completion of the $50 million facility. At 75,000 square feet, it is double in size of the previous cancer center, increasing capacity to offer more high-quality cancer services and advanced clinical research than have ever been available on the Northshore.
This special occasion was commemorated at 11 a.m. with remarks by leadership from local officials, Ochsner Health (Ochsner) and St. Tammany Health System (STHS), and facility tours were offered to those in attendance. The new, enhanced cancer care facility opens to patients on Monday, June 14.
The new cancer center will bring innovations to the fight against cancer close to home. Located on the campus of Ochsner Health Center - Covington and near St. Tammany Parish Hospital, the new center provides patients with convenient access to world-class cancer care. The partnership will continue to ensure that patients have specialized care and expertise through the advanced care options Ochsner offers, coupled with the trusted, local integrative health solutions that STHS provides. Thousands of patients will be cared for annually by a multidisciplinary team of specialists and sub-specialists to meet the challenges presented by more than 20 different types of cancer.
- 75,000 square feet over three floors
- 30 physicians and more than 80 other healthcare professionals dedicated to cancer care
- Integrative Oncology Services and comprehensive symptom management which includes physical therapy, yoga, acupuncture, rehabilitation area, survivorship services and meditation space
- 47 private and semi-private infusion bays overlooking a tranquil pine forest surrounding Flowers Bayou, in a space filled with natural light
- Clinic space with a multidisciplinary design where patients benefit from a collaborative approach to cancer care by a highly skilled team of medical, radiation and surgical oncologists, oncology nurses and navigators dedicated to supporting our cancer patients and their loved ones
- An Ochsner Health O Bar, a retail experience offering the latest in cutting edge, interactive health technology to help patients seamlessly manage health and wellness with specialized digital medicine programs designed specifically for cancer patients
- Access to Ochsner’s robust clinical trials, including Ochsner’s early phase Precision Cancer Therapies Program and more than 160 total cancer trials.
“Since our partnership began in 2014, Ochsner Health and St. Tammany Health System have been committed to growing services and enhancing access to care on the Northshore, and today is an exciting step forward as we celebrate the opening of the cancer center,” said Warner Thomas, president and CEO, Ochsner Health. “This new center will give patients access to the latest in cancer treatments and therapies as well as advanced clinical trials in their local community, so they can receive the best cancer care close to home with friends and family by their side.”
“The opening of this facility really does mark a new day for cancer care in St. Tammany Parish,” STHS President and CEO Joan Coffman said. “First and foremost, it enables St. Tammany Health System, working with our partners at Ochsner, to further raise the bar on the quality cancer services we’ve been providing our Northshore neighbors for years. What I’m most grateful for, however – and what I think many in the community will be most grateful for – is that it will mean so many will be able to find the world-class cancer care they need right here, close home and in their own backyard. That truly is a blessing.”
The new center also includes an increased offering of supportive services such as nutrition, yoga and tai chi, acupuncture and psychology provided by a team that specializes in caring for oncology patients.
These offerings underscore an important focus of the Ochsner multidisciplinary team approach: the social, physical and emotional impacts of cancer treatment. Furthermore, they will complement existing programming, including chemotherapy classes designed for patients and families embarking on chemotherapy treatment and support groups available to all members of the community. Educational resources and regular support groups will continue to be offered to patients and any member of the community seeking support as they or a loved one battles cancer.
“The new cancer center offers more than just much needed extra space and a new building,” said Brian Moore, MD, FACS, medical director, Ochsner Cancer Institute. “It reinforces our commitment to collaborative, patient-centered care using the latest technology, innovative treatments and a holistic approach. Our team of experts are among the best trained and renowned clinicians in the nation and with our multi-specialty care team are able to treat common and rare forms of cancer.”
“The new cancer center represents years of collaboration between St. Tammany Health System and Ochsner,” said Jack Khashou, administrator of the new facility. “But it’s by no means the culmination of that work. It’s just another beginning. With this ribbon-cutting, we now embark on the next chapter in what is a shared commitment to evolve and innovate, all in the name of bringing the best available cancer care to the Northshore. So stay tuned. The best is yet to come.”
Ochsner Health and St. Tammany Health System have partnered to build this new cancer center facility in Covington. The cancer center, which will operate as a campus of Ochsner Medical Center, will be staffed by both Ochsner and St. Tammany providers, as well as community physicians in a seamless and coordinated care program that puts the patient at the center of all their treatment decisions. This long-standing partnership provides high quality healthcare to families across the region and capitalizes on the advanced practices and specialties of Ochsner and the over 60-years of trusted care that St. Tammany Health System has provided to the community.
Additionally, Ochsner will continue to grow its robust clinical cancer research program, which offers patients access to early-phase clinical trials, cutting-edge drugs and anti-cancer agents through its Precision Cancer Therapies Program. Patients will have access to the largest clinical trials network in Louisiana, including a broad portfolio of Phase 1 and 2 trials, allowing patients to stay closer to home for these groundbreaking, novel therapies. Ochsner’s commitment to research and innovation is one of many reasons the new cancer center will be a regional destination for cancer care.
The new facility is connected to the entire Ochsner Health network of facilities and physicians through Epic – Ochsner’s integrated electronic health record system, which enables Ochsner and STHS physicians to securely share patient information, resulting in a higher level of coordinated care across the system. Patients can also use personalized MyOchsner or MyChart (STHS) accounts to access tests results and schedule appointments online.
Cancer Care at Ochsner
The Ochsner Cancer Institute has cared for patients from all 50 states and 28 countries at its comprehensive cancer centers located throughout the New Orleans region, St. Tammany Parish, Baton Rouge and North Louisiana. Annually, Ochsner serves more than 34,000 adult and pediatric cancer patients. Five-year cancer survival rates for those treated at Ochsner continue to exceed the national average not only for the four major cancer malignancies of breast, colon, lung and prostate, but also several other types, including melanoma, head and neck, pancreatic, ovarian and cervical cancers.
The Ochsner Cancer Institute delivers advanced technology and treatment options such as
precision therapies, early tumor detection programs and the largest clinical trials network in Louisiana, so that patients do not have to leave the state for high-quality cancer care.
Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released in 2020 shows a decline in cancer death rates during the 20-year period from 1999 to 2018, resulting in a 26 percent drop overall, highlighting the critical difference routine cancer screenings can make in overall outcomes. Simply put—early cancer detection can save lives. It is critical to not delay medical care and that includes routine cancer screenings. All Ochsner facilities have implemented rigorous safety protocols and are committed to keeping you healthy. It’s important to talk with a doctor about when and how often cancer screenings should be done. Ochsner’s goal is to conduct 141,000 total additional cancer screenings by 2022.
For more information about Ochsner’s award-winning cancer care or to make an appointment, please visit www.ochsner.org/cancer-care.
About Ochsner Health
Ochsner Health is a system that delivers health to the people of Louisiana, Mississippi and the Gulf South with a mission to Serve, Heal, Lead, Educate and Innovate. Ochsner Health is a not-for-profit committed to giving back to the communities it serves through preventative screenings, health and wellness resources and partnerships with innovative organizations that share our vision. Ochsner Health healed more than 900,000 people from across the globe in 2020, providing the latest medical breakthroughs and therapies, including digital medicine for chronic conditions and telehealth specialty services. Ochsner Health is a national leader, named the top hospital in Louisiana and a top children’s hospital by U.S. News & World Report. As Louisiana’s leading healthcare educator, Ochsner Health and its partners educate thousands of healthcare professionals annually. Ochsner Health is innovating healthcare by investing in new technologies and research to make world-class care more accessible, affordable, convenient and effective. Ochsner's team of more than 32,000 employees and 4,500 providers are working to reinvent the future of health and wellness in the region. To learn more about Ochsner Health, please visit www.ochsner.org. To transform your health, please visit www.ochsner.org/healthyyou.
About St. Tammany Health System
The heartbeat of its community, St. Tammany Health System cares for patients and families with excellence, compassion and teamwork. It is recognized for quality, safety and service excellence by CareChex, Leapfrog, Healthgrades, Hospital Compare, Women’s Choice and US News & World Report. St. Tammany Parish Hospital Service District No. 1 and Ochsner Health work together in partnership to improve the community’s health and quality of life. Together, west St. Tammany’s top two independent health leaders represent the most complete system of care, aligning behind the common goals of improving access, expanding specialty care and making care affordable. Under their agreement, each retains its autonomy; neither manages nor owns the other. Self-supporting, not-for-profit STHS is A+ rated by Fitch and receives no tax funding. More at StTammany.health