Columbus Community Hospital establishes tumor board

COLUMBUS, Neb. -- Columbus Community Hospital announced Thursday that it has established a tumor board composed of specialists who will recommend the best care for cancer patients.

“Cancer care is complex and often involves multiple specialties to optimize treatment for individualized care,” said Dr. Joan Keit, medical director at Columbus Cancer Care. “A tumor board provides a forum for coordinating the multidisciplinary team of experts to review individual patient cases.”

A tumor board team can include primary care doctors, radiologists, pathologists, medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, surgeons and any other relevant subspecialty for a particular case. Nurses, rehabilitation therapists and social workers may also contribute. Together, they meet regularly to discuss cancer cases before making final treatment recommendations.

Specialists meeting together can be helpful in determining treatment options and making decisions with full multidisciplinary input. Board members also might discuss the latest data and clinical trials appropriate for a particular case.

“The tumor board at CCH is an effort to improve the already exceptional care for cancer patients and provide a learning environment for physicians and staff,” said Keith Luedders, vice president of ancillary services at the hospital.

Physicians often talk among themselves to coordinate care, but a tumor board formalizes the discussion.

“Having a multidisciplinary tumor board is thought to improve patient care and is recommended by many agencies, such as the National Comprehensive Cancer Network and the American College of Surgeons,” Keit said. “By establishing the tumor board, the medical staff and administration at CCH are demonstrating a commitment to improving cancer care for our community.”