In the United States, only 27 institutions have been awarded the Gold level “Center of Excellence” by the International Cardio-Oncology Society (IC-OS). The Cardio-Oncology Program at the Georgia Cancer Center is proud to be one of those 27 institutions.
“We are one of the two Centers of Excellence in Georgia, the other being Emory, so I think that speaks for the care we provide,” said Avirup Guha, MBBS, the director of the Cardio-Oncology program at the Georgia Cancer Center at the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University.
IC-OS defines a Center of Excellence as a program affording the best patient outcomes possible having an exceptionally high concentration of expertise and resources on a specific area of medicine while delivering comprehensive and efficient care.
IC-OS has a strict point system when it comes to awarding designations. An institution can receive bronze, silver, or the coveted gold designation depending on numerous factors. ICOS looks into the volume of new and established patients, the research and publications the institution is producing, the education and training it provides, Cardio-Oncology Committee involvement with other organizations, quality improvement, and program building.
“A gold level displays the level of care and dedication that we provide for our patients and the community as a whole,” said Guha.
The IC-OS committee was particularly impressed by the program’s quality improvement projects and the goals it has set for itself. Some of the goals of the Cardio-Oncology program are: Minimize/identify/treat cardiotoxicity in patients with established heart disease during and after treatment, survey for cardiotoxicity in cancer survivors, evaluate and assess risk for patients with newly diagnosed cancer for cardiotoxicity, provide multidisciplinary care and promote clinical/research collaborations and education at all levels, and offer virtual care to enhance compliance and follow up.
“This designation is for three years and then they review for a renewal. So my goal for the next renewal is to see that this program is expanded beyond this campus,” said Guha when asked about the future goals he had in mind for the program.
To learn more about the Cardio-Oncoloy program, you can visit their site or call 706-721-0284 to make an appointment. If you would like to keep up with Guha’s work, you can visit the clinical trials’ site or follow him on Twitter.