KNOXVILLE, Tenn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Provision CARES Proton Therapy Center, a non-profit medical provider in Knoxville, Tennessee, reached a milestone by treating the 2,000th patient with proton therapy. Opening on January 20, 2014, Provision has positively impacted thousands of patients and their family members by offering the most advanced treatment option available, proton therapy. “It’s a privilege to know we are serving cancer patients with a treatment option that impacts their quality of life by targeting the cancer and sparing damage to healthy tissue and nearby organs” says Dr. Ben Wilkinson, Medical Director, Provision CARES Proton Therapy.
Provision CARES Proton Therapy has treated over 72 different tumor sites of patients from 34 states and 11 countries averaging six weeks of treatment. The Knoxville proton center was the first in Tennessee, second in the Southeast and 13th in the U.S. The 2000th patient traveled over 250 miles, from Alabama to receive proton therapy. “It’s been a long journey, but I felt I was led to Provision by the Lord. I’m glad my wife found Provision CARES Proton Therapy before my scheduled surgery,” said Mr. Baldwin, patient #2000, upon “ringing the bell” at his graduation ceremony. “The staff is exceptionally wonderful and always want to do what’s best for the patient. I look forward to sharing my experience, as an Ambassador, with others.”
Proton therapy benefits are cited in clinical trials and patient testimonials, where quality of life can often be significant, with regards to reduced side effects, complications and recurring cancers.
Due to the expansion of proton therapy, there are currently 28 operating centers in the United States. “Tennessee is very fortunate to have access to the most advanced cancer treatment in the world, and we feel honored to reach a milestone that speaks to the number of people who research treatment options and choose proton therapy,” says Tom Welch, President, Provision CARES Proton Therapy. “However, it’s unfortunate when hundreds of patients aren’t able to be treated each year because their commercial insurance company will not pay for their treatment.”
Tennessee lawmakers overwhelmingly approved a proton therapy bill in the 2018 Legislative General Assembly, which Tennessee Governor Haslam vetoed on May 3, 2018. The bill expands coverage for members of the State Health Plan to include hypo-fractionated proton therapy protocols, recommended by a Board-Certified Radiation Oncologist. “This bill was so important because it would have shown the power a company has to elect its own insurance coverage,” says Mr. Welch. “In this case the employer was the State of Tennessee. Although Medicare has covered proton therapy for twenty years, commercial insurers have more narrow coverage policies and approve patient’s cases one-by-one. We support the Tennessee Cancer Patient Coalition’s efforts to lobby the Tennessee General Assembly to override the Governor’s veto.”
ABOUT PROVISION CARES PROTON THERAPY
Provision CARES Proton Therapy, a non-profit medical provider, located in Knoxville, was the first proton therapy cancer treatment center in Tennessee, second in the southeast and 13th in the nation. Provision is the first to achieve ASTRO’s Accreditation Program for Excellence (APEx) in Knoxville and in the state of Tennessee. Provision provides a unique combination of personalized, comprehensive patient care and leading-edge technology, offering one of the most advanced cancer treatments in the world, proton therapy. An advanced form of radiation therapy that uses a single beam of high-energy protons to treat various forms of cancer, proton therapy treats tumors by directing radiation into the tumor site where doses of radiation destroy cancerous cells. Proton therapy is more precise and spares damage to healthy tissue and organs providing patients the ability to maintain a better quality of life.
For more information about proton therapy, visit www.provisionproton.com