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June 2009 Issue

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UC Barrett Cancer Institute at UH Undergoes Changes

By Amanda Harper
Published June 2009

The UC Barrett Cancer Institute at University Hospital is changing in many ways.

In March, the adult cancer program got a new leader—George Atweh, MD—who is working hard to recruit an additional 25 clinicians and researchers who will focus on improving disease-based cancer care in Greater Cincinnati and beyond.

At the same time, the outpatient clinic is undergoing extensive physical and technological up-grades to accommodate expanding multidisciplinary care teams and improve patient services, access and satisfaction.
Tom Kyllo, administrative director for the Barrett Cancer Institute, says capital investments include leading edge diagnostic and treatment technology and updated spaces designed for patient comfort and use by multidisciplinary teams of physicians, nurses and support staff.

To help drive this effort, Western & Southern Financial recently made a $2 million gift to partially fund phase-2 renovations to the Barrett Cancer Institute. The company made an initial contribution of $2 million in 2008. 

In conjunction with this gift, the Barrett Cancer Institute was able to introduce another advanced tool to its patient care program: the Varian Trilogy System.

The system expands the institute’s technological capabilities beyond intensity modulated radiotherapy to include electronic 2D and 3D image-guided delivery of radiation treatment.

Trilogy includes the latest radiosurgical capabilities, which will be used by Barrett Cancer Institute clinicians to treat brain tumors and other neurosurgical problems.

“These technologic advances allow for radiation to be more precisely delivered than has been previously available, which can lead to fewer side effects from radiation therapy and higher cure rates for our patients,” explains William Barrett, MD, chair of radiation oncology at UC and physician with the Barrett Cancer Institute.

Other key phase-2 renovations include:
•     A new dual-purpose linear accelerator to treat superficial cancers, such as shallow skin cancers.
•     Installation of a next generation intensity modulated radiation therapy treatment planning system (Philips Medical Systems Pinnacle3) that incorporates pre-treatment visualization tools for identifying soft tissues and vascular connections surrounding tumors.
•     Upgrade to an integrated, advanced technology radiation oncology information system that serves as the central source for radiation oncology patient care management.

Fundraising efforts are still under way to support the multi-year renovation of the Barrett Cancer Institute. For information on how to support cancer research, patient care and education, contact Kathryn Cascella at (513) 558-9879 or

The Barrett Cancer Institute is part of the Cincinnati Cancer Consortium, a joint cancer program involving the UC College of Medicine, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and University Hospital.

The collaborative initiative brings together interdisciplinary research teams of caring scientists and health professionals to research and develop new cures, while providing a continuum of care for children, adults and families with cancer. 

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