We want to provide the personal, mental, and physical support throughout your battle with cancer, because we understand every patient is unique. Our infusion and radiation therapy centers provide continuous coordination of patient care, patient education, and medication management. Our infusion center also provides an on-site advanced pharmacy, registered doctors of pharmacy, and a certified pharmacy technician.
Radiation oncology brings state-of-the-art treatment of external radiation therapy curated for each individual patient. Our physicians, pharmacists, and nurses work collaboratively to provide patient centered care.
With our team, treatment and support is offered outside the physician’s office with services such as an on-site social worker, pastoral care, patient support volunteers, nutritional consultation, lodging assistance, massage therapy, and a patient portal that allows patients to stay up to date on their healthcare management. Our Survivorship Program provides further assistance even after cancer treatment is finalized.
“I admired the clinic staff who, even in the last stages of life treated people with love and dignity, recognizing them as people with accomplishments and loved ones, rather than just narrowly acknowledging them as a patient with cancer. My experience in fighting cancer truly is a model for how cancer treatment should be. The Great Falls Clinic treats thousands of people, but you are more than just a number, you are treated as that very special ‘One in a million’.” -Previous Patient
Our Oncology physicians have a longstanding history of high-quality patient care. Physicians Dr. Guter, Dr. Kaae, and Dr. Warr specialize in the treatments of chemotherapy and infusion. Dr. Underhill specializes in various external radiation therapies for cancer treatment. Each provider has achieved Board Certification and years of experience in their cancer treatment specialty.
Our patient care professionals do more than deliver radiation or chemotherapy, schedule your appointments, draw blood samples, and so on. Their compassionate, caring interaction with patients and family members is based on an understanding and appreciation of every individual's struggle with the implications of their experience with cancer. These highly skilled individuals have come to know and treasure the uniquely close relationships that develop between themselves and those they serve.
Our nursing staff members hold professional certifications in oncology nursing, which makes them competent in administering chemotherapy and other biologics in both adults and pediatric populations. These credentials are maintained through attendance at numerous continuing education courses and ongoing practice in oncology.
Our specialized nurses closely monitor patients’ response to chemotherapy and other disease specific infusion therapies. These include autoimmune, hematologic, and metabolic disorders. They provide education to patients and families about what to expect during treatment. They also serve as a resource to oncologists daily with their observations and insight.
Radiation oncology services are provided at Clinic Cancer Care by a team of professionals who focus on using radiation in the medical environment to treat cancers.
The medical physicist works directly with the radiation oncologist in developing a plan of care using external radiation or internally implanted radioactive sources. Using the principles of physics, the most precise treatment plan is developed that will specifically target the cancer tissue and spare healthy tissue in the surrounding areas.
The medical dosimetrist works under the supervision of the medical physicist to determine the most effective angle the radiation beam should be applied, along with the strength and dosage of the radiation along its pathway. Technologies today allow the dosage to be adjusted as it travels through the body, allowing for healthy tissue to be spared as the cancer tissue is targeted.
The radiation therapist team applies the treatment plan and works directly with the patient in positioning them for treatment and carrying out the application of the radiation to the diseased tissue by the various technologies available. The radiation therapist is the expert in treatment delivery, along with fabrication of molds and immobilization devices used in the delivery of radiation therapy.
Intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) is an advanced mode of high-precision radiotherapy that delivers precise radiation doses to a malignant tumor or specific areas within the tumor.
- Image-guided radiation therapy (IGRT) is the use of frequent imaging during a course of radiation therapy to improve the precision and accuracy of the delivery of treatment.
- Cone Beam computed tomography (CBCT) is for patient positioning during radiation therapy represents a recent and significant advance in what is now being called image guided radiation therapy (IGRT). With CBCT, a full CT scan of the patient on the treatment couch is obtained immediately before radiation delivery, with the CT scan taken and reconstructed in less than 2 minutes. The CT scan can then be automatically registered to the CT taken earlier for treatment planning to facilitate precise repositioning of the patient to the treatment machine isocenter.
Stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) is a type of radiation therapy in which a few very high doses of radiation are delivered to small, well-defined tumors. The goal is to deliver a radiation dose that is high enough to kill the cancer while minimizing exposure to surrounding healthy organs. SBRT involves the delivery of a few fractionated radiation treatments (usually up to 5 treatments).
SBRT is typically used to treat small, early-stage tumors of the lung, or isolated recurrences or metastases from various types of cancer. SBRT has also been used successfully to treat early-stage non-small cell lung cancer, pancreatic cancer, and metastatic cancers in the:
- Adrenal glands
The innovative RapidArc radiotherapy technology represents the latest evolution of cancer treatment technology, setting new benchmarks for speed, precision and patient comfort.
The Great Falls Clinic offers Patient Navigation services for individuals facing the difficult diagnosis of a life-threatening illness or where cancer is suspected.
Patient Navigators specialize in providing personalized healthcare guidance as patients go through the screening process, gain understanding about their diagnosis, make decisions about treatment, and transition from active treatment to survivorship. To ensure patients receive the best care possible, a Patient Navigator advocates on their behalf, enhancing communication with their providers, coordinating timely treatment, and providing critical support through all stages of their healthcare journey.
Patient Navigation offers:
- Education for the patient and family regarding the diagnosis, treatment options and cancer care issues
- Identification of potential barriers to treatment, providing resources and referrals to support services
- Coordination of care with healthcare team members throughout the healthcare system
- Assistance with continuity of support while moving from diagnosis through treatment to survivorship
For more information please contact:
Sarah Woloszyn, RN
When patients complete their cancer treatment and resume their previous activities of life, it is not unusual for them to experience residual emotional and physical effects. Clinic Cancer Care sees the need to support patients after their active treatment is completed and to provide this help it has developed a Survivorship Program. Patients are invited to participate in this program at the time of their one-year follow up with their oncologist. Prior to this visit they are contacted by a registered nurse, the Survivorship Program coordinator, who individually discusses with them their physical and emotional concerns. Based on each patient’s individual needs, support services such as social worker, dietitian, physical therapist, or business office representative will be available at the time of their oncologist visit to assist the patient with any special needs or questions.
CANCER SUPPORT GROUP
The Clinic Cancer Care department holds cancer support groups twice a month.
For more information please visit: gfclinic.com/cancer-support-group/
The Cancer Center is an outpatient hospital department of the Great Falls Clinic Hospital.