North Fulton Hospital is pleased to announce that it has received a three-year Accreditation Award with Commendation from the American College of Surgeon’s Commission on Cancer (CoC). The accreditation acknowledges North Fulton Hospital as a Community Cancer Center.
The hospital was voluntarily evaluated through a rigorous on-site survey process in April. During the survey, the CoC gathered extensive performance information and determined that the hospital had demonstrated its ability to provide high-quality comprehensive cancer programs that offer the entire spectrum of cancer-control activities—from prevention and early diagnosis to rehabilitation and long-term follow-up.
“We are thrilled to share this news with our community,” said Deborah C. Keel, CEO of North Fulton Hospital. “By achieving this accreditation, we have assured our patients, their family, and our staff of a high standard of cancer care in the heart of North Fulton.”
North Fulton Hospital joins a list of approximately 1,500 other facilities across the nation who have earned this coveted accreditation. The CoC estimates that accredited programs like the one at North Fulton Hospital annually diagnose and treat 80 percent of all new cancer cases.
The CoC looks for five central elements when conducting an accreditation survey, and found each of these present at North Fulton Hospital:
- Clinical services that provide advanced pretreatment evaluation, staging, treatment and clinical follow-up for cancer patients.
- The presence of a cancer committee that leads the program through setting goals, monitoring activity, evaluating patient outcomes, and improving care.
- The offering of cancer conferences to provide a forum for patient consultation and to contribute to physician education.
- The presence of a quality-improvement program to evaluate and improve patient outcomes.
- The use of a cancer registry and database to monitor the quality of care.
This accreditation not only validates the current strength of North Fulton Hospital’s cancer program, but it also holds the hospital to standards that help ensure continuous excellence in care. To maintain accreditation, CoC-accredited facilities must undergo an on-site review every three years.
““The diagnosis of cancer can be the most frightening time in a person’s life,” said Teresa Urquhart, Chief Operating Officer for the hospital and administrative lead for the accreditation process. “Our accreditation is a public affirmation that patients and their loved ones can be confident in choosing North Fulton Hospital for their care—now and in the future.”
A Team Approach
A central factor that the CoC considers in the accreditation process is the presence of multidisciplinary cooperation among a hospital’s medical and professional staff. The CoC notes that due to the complexity of cancer treatment, improved patient care can result from a collaborative environment.
Whether it be through physician-to-physician consultations or multidisciplinary staff meetings to confer on cases, the cancer teams at North Fulton Hospital foster collaboration to help ensure the most comprehensive and individualized care they can offer patients.
“The lines of communication are always open among all team members. Each member of a patient’s team brings his or her own unique expertise and experience to the table,” said Boyd Byrd, M.D., radiologist and chairperson for North Fulton Hospital’s cancer education forum. “We want to consider the patient’s care from every angle possible, to explore every option, every treatment, and every approach available.”
Quality Care Close to Home
North Fulton Hospital’s location in the heart of North Fulton County uniquely positions it to not only be able to serve those needing cancer care in its own community, but it also provides a safe, convenient location for out-of-town family and friends who want to stay close by to a loved one going through treatment. From plentiful hotels and restaurants, to diverse shopping and worship options, the community surrounding North Fulton Hospital has no shortage of necessary amenities to offer.
About North Fulton Hospital
North Fulton Hospital (NFH), part of Tenet Georgia, is a 202-bed, acute-care hospital located on Highway 9, Alpharetta Highway, in Roswell. Opened in 1983, NFH serves North Fulton and surrounding counties through its team of more than 1,000 employees, 400 staff physicians and 200 volunteers. NFH is a state-designated Level II trauma center and provides a continuum of services through its centers and programs, including neurosciences, women’s health services, orthopedics, rehabilitation, surgical services, gastroenterology and oncology. The hospital is fully accredited and is also recognized by the American College of Surgeon’s Commission on Cancer as an Accredited Cancer Program, as well as being certified as a Primary Stroke Center by the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations, the nation’s oldest and largest hospital accreditation agency.
About the Commission on Cancer
Since its inception in 1922, the Commission on Cancer's (CoC) goal has been to reduce the morbidity and mortality of cancer through education, standard setting and the monitoring of quality care. Beginning in the 1930s, the CoC established standards and a program of review and accreditation for cancer programs. Currently almost 1,500 facilities have gained accreditation of their cancer program. The standards continue to promote and support multidisciplinary care and improvements to quality overall.