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NYC hospitals expand access to proton therapy

by Loren Bonner, DOTmed News Online Editor | October 01, 2013
ProCure's New Jersey center
(Credit ProCure)
Patients at major hospitals in New York City will now have easier access to proton therapy treatment.

An agreement between the New York Proton Consortium (NYPC) and ProCure Proton Therapy Center in Somerset, New Jersey will ensure that cancer patients at NYPC hospitals being treated with proton therapy at ProCure will continue to have their treatments provided by their physicians. In other words, the NYPC physicians will have privileges at ProCure New Jersey.

"Our agreement with NYPC allows us to share our access to proton therapy," said Dr. Oren Cahlon, medical director of the ProCure Proton Therapy Center in Somerset, N.J., in a statement.

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ProCure opened up the treatment center in Somerset in 2012. It's the first to operate in the New Jersey and New York area and is one of only 12 centers in the nation. One of the reasons there are so few proton treatment centers is because of the financial investment, which can exceed $100 million. Proton therapy delivers high doses of radiation noninvasively with minimal side effects. In order to do that, a 200-ton cyclotron must accelerate protons to two-thirds the speed of light.

NYPC includes Continuum Health Partners, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, Montefiore Medical Center, Mount Sinai Medical Center, and New York University Langone Medical Center.

NYPC is also said to have its own proton therapy center in the works, but no completion date has been announced.

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