Larger cancer programs can provide the majority of cancer care components, growing or smaller community programs cannot. And some elements (e.g. Phase I clinical research trials) are most often accessed in academic settings. Affiliation or cancer services networks provide one approach to ensuring local or regional patients have access, through your institution and physicians, to a full continuum of services – such as genetic testing, Proton beam therapy, site-specific surgeons, and similar specialty services.
The Oncology Group is experienced in working with hospital networks to “rationalize” cancer programs across several institutions, and with evaluating community hospital-Academic Medical Center affiliations’ opportunities and threats.