Providence first in Pacific NW to achieve national accreditation for Rectal Cancer Program

Providence Cancer Institute’s Rectal Cancer Program at Providence Portland and Providence St. Vincent medical centers is the first in the Pacific Northwest and among the first 25 in the nation to earn accreditation from the National Accreditation Program for Rectal Cancer, or NAPRC, a quality program of the American College of Surgeons.

To achieve NAPRC accreditation, a rectal center must demonstrate compliance with the numerous NAPRC standards ranging from program management and clinical services to quality improvement efforts that influence patient outcomes. Centers are required to establish a multidisciplinary rectal cancer team that includes clinical representatives from surgery, pathology, radiology, radiation oncology, medical oncology and nursing.

The accreditation for Providence Portland was spearheaded by Mark Whiteford, M.D., FACS, FASCRS, medical director of Colorectal Surgery and Dysplasia Clinic at Providence Cancer Institute, and a colorectal surgeon of The Oregon Clinic. Jeffrey Manchio, M.D., FACS, FASCRS, a colorectal surgeon affiliated with Providence Cancer Institute and the NW Center for Colorectal Health, led the accreditation for Providence St. Vincent.

“Accreditation by the NAPRC is validation of our commitment to providing the best possible care to patients with rectal cancer,” said Dr. Whiteford. “The NAPRC provides the structure and resources for Providence to operate a high-quality rectal center dedicated to multidisciplinary, integrated, comprehensive rectal cancer services.”

Additionally, the Providence program met standards addressing the promptness of clinical services that the rectal cancer program provides, including Carcinoembryonic Antigen (CEA) testing, Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), and Computerized Tomography (CT) imaging for cancer staging which allow patients to start treatment within a defined timeframe. Rectal cancer programs accredited by the NAPRC undergo a site visit every three years and are also accredited by the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer

This commitment to excellence and compassion by the rectal program is reflected in the growing number of patients who seek care at Providence. Providence Cancer Institute is one of the largest providers of colon and rectal cancer care in Oregon, caring for one-fifth of patients diagnosed with benign and malignant conditions in Oregon annually. More rectal cancer procedures are performed at Providence Portland and Providence St. Vincent combined than other health systems in Portland.

“Studies have shown that patients who receive care at a high-volume cancer center have superior outcomes to patients who receive care at lower-volume centers,” said Dr. Manchio. “Patients who come to Providence for their colon and rectal care receive the highest standard of quality care.”

Patients may also benefit from early access to cutting-edge therapies through Providence’s robust clinical trials portfolio. Providence investigators specialize in the testing and development of novel immunotherapies, targeted therapies, surgical techniques and other treatments for colon and rectal cancer. “Our patients participated in clinical studies that led to the first immunotherapy approved as first-line treatment for advanced colorectal cancer,” said Gina Vaccaro, M.D., medical director, Providence Gastrointestinal Oncology Research. “Clinical trials will help provide our patients with novel treatment options in the future.”

“As chair of the Rectal-Anal Task Force of the National Cancer Institute and medical director of Gastrointestinal Oncology for Providence Cancer Institute, I am thrilled that our rectal program has received this honor,” said Hagen Kennecke, M.D., MPH, FRCPC. “Our NAPRC accreditation allows all patients in need of rectal cancer care to be individualized and treated according to national guidelines. We are delighted that Providence is among the few centers recognized by NAPRC with its standards of excellence.”

To learn more, visit Providence Colorectal Cancer Program.

About Providence Cancer Institute:

Providence Cancer Institute, a part of Providence St. Joseph Health, offers the latest in cancer services, including diagnostic, treatment, prevention, education, support and internationally renowned research. Providence Cancer Institute is home to the Earle A. Chiles Research Institute, a world-class research facility located within the Robert W. Franz Cancer Center in Portland, Oregon, and a recognized leader in the field of cancer immunotherapy since 1993. Investigators lead more than 400 active clinical trials in key areas such as cancers of the: breast, colon/rectum, prostate, lung, esophagus, liver and pancreas, head and neck, ovary, skin and blood. Other studies are investigating treatments for COVID-19. Learn more at providenceoregon.org/cancer.

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