Those pushing a new cancer center for Augusta were able Thursday to present a clearer picture of their vision - a watercolor, in fact. Members of the ad hoc Augusta Cancer Center of Excellence committee met to discuss plans to attract one of three top-tier cancer centers envisioned in Gov. Roy Barnes' $1 billion Georgia Cancer Coalition initiative. The proposed Augusta center would not only pull together local cancer efforts, but also appear to tie into efforts at the Medical College of Georgia to promote cancer research and biotechnology.
Senate Majority Leader Charles Walker seemed to sum it up best. "Think research," he urged members of the Augusta Cancer Center of Excellence committee who met Friday. "Think of ways to enable the research capacity here. And everything else will be a spinoff."
The best choice to lead Medical College of Georgia is someone who understands its strengths, weaknesses and potential and who has a vision for the future. That person is Dr. Daniel Rahn, who currently serves as vice dean of Clinical Affairs in the School of Medicine, senior vice president of Medical Affairs and chief medical officer of MCG Health Inc., the hospital and clinic arm of MCG. Now, he takes over the helm of MCG as its incoming president.
It is more than a pastel sketch of a research building; it is bigger even than Augusta. What community leaders spell out in their proposal for the Augusta Cancer Center of Excellence is a regional network that includes Athens and the University of Georgia. It would mean more than $150 million in investment from the state, hospitals and doctors, foundations and donors. It would change the treatment of cancer patients in the area forever. And it is doable, said Medical College of Georgia President Daniel W. Rahn, one of the leaders of the local effort.
I APPLAUD Gov. Roy Barnes for his statewide cancer care and research initiatives. As a resident of Augusta, I am grateful for the efforts of Charles Walker, Julian Osbon, Tim Shelnut and the Augusta Cancer Center For Excellence committee in attempting to develop a consensus within our community and among its many health care enterprises to participate. This consensus is essential for beginning to structure and raise money to support a credible proposal for our community's involvement in the governor's initiatives.
...fair way of valuing services," Dr. Rahn said. He is already talking to those involved in seeking the Augusta Cancer Center of Excellence, one of three top-tier centers envisioned in Gov. Roy Barnes' $800 million cancer initiative. He...
Tens of millions of dollars and loads of new patients await Augusta hospitals and community leaders if they score a cancer center of excellence. First, members of the medical community must prove they can come together to coordinate services and the philanthropic-minded must prove they can raise more than $50 million for the effort. The goal is to get one of three top-tier cancer centers envisioned in Gov. Roy Barnes' $800 million Georgia Cancer Coalition initiative.