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Cancer Center Expansion & Renovation

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Thursday, January 16, 2020 -- Armstrong County Commissioners signed a resolution authorizing the submission of the Application and Business plan for a $1,000,000 RACP construction grant awarded by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to be used by ACMH Hospital for the expansion and renovation of the ACMH Richard G. Laube Cancer Center. The Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program (RACP) is a grant program administered by the Office of the Budget for the acquisition and construction of regional economic, cultural, civic, recreational, and historical improvement projects. 

Originally announced in July, 2019, the RACP award is the result of the collaborative efforts of State Senator Joseph Pittman, Representative Jeff Pyle, Governor Tom Wolf and the County of Armstrong. The County will serve as the grantee through its Department of Planning, and will pass through the funds to ACMH Hospital as work on the project is completed

The Richard G. Laube Cancer Center provides comprehensive, accredited cancer care. ACMH Hospital's advanced technologies combine with the expertise of Allegheny Health Network oncologists to enable early stage cancer diagnosis. ACMH is proud to provide the broad spectrum of surgery, medication therapy, radiation therapy, immunotherapy and bone marrow transplantation to cure or stop the progression of cancer.

The renovation plan was initiated by ACMH Hospital Administration and Board of Directors to address a growing need in the community. Statistics show that cancer cases are on the rise due to an aging population and lifestyle related factors such as smoking, alcohol, obesity and exposure to sunlight. This increase in demand has resulted in longer wait times for appointments and overcrowding in the chemotherapy area.  The ACMH Richard G. Laube Cancer Center, which provides outpatient cancer treatment, is the only comprehensive cancer treatment facility within a 22-mile radius.

“It is extremely important that cancer patients are able to receive their care close to home,” said Dana Klingensmith, ACMH Oncology Nurse Manager. “These patients don’t want to travel long distances for care. Cancer patients are usually very sick, with treatment regimens requiring several trips per week to a clinic. Chemotherapy can leave patients nauseous and extremely fatigued making travel intolerable.”  

Designs are being finalized that will maximize the cancer center’s existing footprint and incorporate numerous patient benefits   The resulting layout,  with larger IV therapy bays will minimize noise and maximize privacy and comfort while providing access to natural light and a direct connection with nursing staff and other support services.  The planned design increases capacity to 18 chemotherapy bays plus 2 private rooms, which will nearly double the current infusion capabilities.  Additional exam rooms will be constructed, resulting in an increase from four to ten which will dramatically decrease appointment wait times for new patients.  The expected increase in new patients will provide additional employment opportunities to Armstrong County residents.

“The new design of the cancer center will allow for a more streamlined approach to cancer treatment,” said John Lewis, ACMH Hospital President and CEO. “We’re creating an environment that is supportive and healing and brings together a larger team of experts to deliver the best care possible. We are pleased that this exceptional care will now be housed in a comfortable and close to home environment for our patients.”

A build out expansion of the front of the cancer center is planned to yield 1,500 square feet of additional treatment space.  Lower level shell space will be utilized for additional exam rooms, offices and support services.  The plan includes a canopied entrance way which has been designed at the corner of the building to provide easy way finding to treatment areas in the upper level and to lower level offices and exam rooms. A daylight connection from the upper floor through a two-story gallery with elevator access and a spacious waiting area has been designed to maximize patient and family comfort.  Plans have been designed to temporarily move the location of treatment areas so that services for cancer patients will not be disrupted during the construction period.

“Oncology and cancer care is a core service and of paramount importance to our region’s population. We sincerely appreciate and thank Senator Pittman and Representative Pyle for their successful efforts in working to secure our  RACP grant,” said John Lewis, ACMH Hospital President and CEO. 





ABOUT ACMH

ACMH Hospital is an exceptional facility with a comprehensive array of services - many of which are unique for a community hospital. Featuring all private rooms and a campus like setting, ACMH has been a trusted member of the community since 1898. ACMH is becoming an increasingly advanced community healthcare system — with the likes of new lung cancer diagnostic procedures, robotic surgery and state-of-the-art interventional radiology. These services join its already-top ranked cardiovascular program, knee and shoulder replacement specialties, primary stroke center and accredited cancer care. With historically low infection rates and highly innovative services, ACMH has evolved to become a destination point of care for many throughout the region.

Inquiries and questions may be directed to Tim Lehner, ACMH Hospital Marketing Supervisor, for appropriate referral. Tim may be contacted at lehnert@acmh.org or 724-543-8609.

ABOUT RICHARD G. LAUBE CANCER CENTER 

The Richard G. Laube Cancer Center is an accredited cancer center. The Commission on Cancer (CoC) of the American College of Surgeons (ACoS) has granted accreditation to the cancer program at ACMH Hospital Richard G. Laube Cancer Center.  To earn CoC accreditation, a cancer program must meet 34 CoC quality care standards, be evaluated every three years through a survey process, and maintain levels of excellence in the delivery of comprehensive patient-centered care. Medical and Radiation Oncology coexist on the ACMH campus, enhancing patient convenience and seamless collaboration. The Radiation Oncology Department at the Laube Cancer Center features state-of-the-art technology with treatment programs including 3D Conformal Radiation Therapy, Brachytherapy and IMRT (Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy. ACMH acquired a state-of-the-art Linear Accelerator in January of 2018. This new equipment offers patients radiation therapy with greater precision and efficiency. The Linear Accelerator is capable of delivering stereotactic radiation for early stage lung cancer – a highly effective curative option for patients who are poor candidates for surgical management.

Inquiries and questions may be directed to Dana Klingensmith for appropriate referral. Dana can be contacted at 724-543-8699 or klingensmithd@acmh.org.