Memorial Sloan Kettering’s suburban presence is expanding with its newest and largest state-of-the-art facility set to welcome patients on October 6. MSK West Harrison, located on Westchester Avenue and easily accessible from I-684 and I-287, is convenient for patients living in New York’s Westchester, Putnam, Dutchess, Orange, and Rockland counties, as well as Fairfield County, Connecticut.
Hudson Valley residents will now have even greater access to the highest caliber and most compassionate cancer care, delivered by MSK physicians, nurses, and specially trained healthcare providers.
“This new site in West Harrison enables us to extend the reach of MSK’s unparalleled cancer care and bring the expertise and dedication of our staff closer to where patients live and work,” said Craig B. Thompson, MD, MSK President and CEO. “This year, MSK celebrates 130 years of tremendous progress in the quest to eradicate cancer. Today we are able to find many cancers at their earliest, most curable stages; combine novel therapies to halt or slow the growth of tumors whenever possible; and improve quality of life for those living with the disease. Building MSK closer to where our patients live and providing the highest level of care is central to MSK’s mission, and together we will continue to build upon the progress made thus far.”
MSK’s Largest Suburban Site To Date
Built to meet the unique needs of cancer patients, the 114,000-square-foot outpatient cancer facility includes the region’s most comprehensive set of cancer services and amenities all under one roof, including more than 30 cancer doctors with expertise in medical and radiation oncology, radiology, surgery, and dermatology (including Mohs surgery), as well as programs for genetic counseling, high-risk cancer screening and surveillance, cancer survivorship, social work, and consultations with certified dietitian-nutritionists. Patients will also find an on-site pharmacy, ample parking, a cafe for quick and healthy food selections, and outdoor spaces designed with a park-like feel. The staff of 140, many of whom reside in the Hudson Valley region and are active in their local communities, includes world-class surgeons, medical and radiation oncologists, and nurses who have decades of experience treating people with cancer.
“The team of doctors and nurses at MSK West Harrison are thought leaders in the world of cancer research, treatment, and prevention, and many have worked tirelessly to help develop and test the current treatment standards in their respective fields,” said José Baselga, MD, PhD, MSK’s Physician-in-Chief. “Our patients will not only have access to the most exemplary care from the most forward-thinking teams at MSK West Harrison, but will also experience it in a serene environment.”
The Patient Experience
At MSK West Harrison, patients’ experiences will encompass the most personalized care and service to treat and support them throughout their journey, while providing conveniences to help lessen the burdens people with cancer often face.
“We want our patients to receive outstanding care for their cancer while experiencing the benefits of remaining closer to home for as much of their treatment journey as possible,” said Richard Barakat, MD, FACS, Deputy Physician-in-Chief for the Regional Care Network and MSK Cancer Alliance. “If we can decrease the burden of travel to some extent, patients will spend less time commuting and more time with their families in the comfort of their own homes. This is important in the healing process.”
MSK West Harrison will be equipped with the most advanced imaging and diagnostic technology available. The site will house the newest CT simulators and linear accelerators that will be used to map and deliver intensity-modulated and image-guided radiation therapy. PET/CT, MRI, advanced mammography, and ultrasound are configured in ways that add comfort and ease to the testing process. Interventional radiology (IR), which utilizes cutting-edge, minimally invasive techniques for cancer diagnosis and treatment, will also have its own unique and tranquil space. The IR suite was constructed with patients’ comfort in mind, yet the technology remains the most progressive and is the only program of its kind in Westchester County.
Partnership with Mount Kisco Medical Group
In an ongoing effort to enhance the experience of our patients, we are excited to announce a partnership with the nationally renowned Mount Kisco Medical Group (MKMG). As part of this innovative partnership, MKMG physicians with appointments to the MSK medical staff will be based on-site at MSK West Harrison to provide clinical services including cardiology, gastroenterology, gynecology, infectious disease, and internal medicine to MSK patients. “We are excited about the opportunity to partner with one of the foremost medical groups in the country, and provide our patients access to the excellent physicians of Mount Kisco Medical Group, all under one roof,” said Dr. Baselga.
“We could not be more pleased to partner with Memorial Sloan Kettering in their brand new, state-of- the-art facility, to provide them with supporting clinical services,” said Scott D. Hayworth, MD, President and CEO of MKMG. “This relationship is perfectly in line with our efforts to partner with world-class organizations as we continue our mission to offer the highest quality, most cost-effective care for all patients.”
Advancing Care: Access to New Treatments Not Available Elsewhere
Another benefit for local patients will be access to clinical trials, including early-stage studies of novel targeted anticancer drugs. “Because clinical trials are so critical in moving cancer research forward, and because a therapy being tested in a trial may be the most effective therapy available, offering patients the opportunity to participate is hugely significant,” said Ephraim Casper, MD, Medical Director of MSK’s Regional Care Network. With on-site staff and dedicated lab space and work areas, patients will have access to new treatments being studied while receiving their care and clinical trial follow-up close to home.
Mobile technology will also play a role in the patient experience, helping to create a more seamless and less stressful visit. Upon check-in, patients visiting MSK West Harrison will be given special tags to carry, which will enable them to move freely about campus while waiting for their appointment or test result.
Using the latest enhanced GPS technology, the tags will enable staff to pinpoint where a patient is sitting, whether it’s in a common area, a waiting room, the café, or a bench in the gardens outside. “Instead of announcing a patient’s name, our staff will be able to find and greet the patient and their caregivers wherever they might be,” said Margaret Burke, MSK’s Senior Vice President of Ambulatory Care and Hospital Operations. “We really wanted to give our patients the sense of freedom and control while they are with us.”
Patients and their caregivers will also have access to iPads while they are on campus. “We provide these amenities as a standard courtesy for patients and visitors in many of our outpatient facilities. It allows choice on how they might spend their time while in our care,” added Ms. Burke.
Long-term Commitment to Westchester County Community
MSK has been delivering outpatient cancer care to Westchester County residents at our facility in Sleepy Hollow for 19 years, offering chemotherapy, radiation therapy, support services, and some clinical trial opportunities, and we will continue to care for patients there. To overcome space constraints and meet the growing demand for our services, we’re confirming our commitment to patients in the area with the opening of MSK West Harrison.
Today, approximately 13 percent of MSK’s current patient population lives in the Hudson Valley and Western Connecticut region. By 2025, cancer incidence in this region is expected to increase by 15 percent, to more than 20,000 newly diagnosed cases. In addition, more than 70 percent of MSK patients living in the Westchester area travel to New York City facilities for treatment. “Because the outpatient treatment of cancer increasingly requires many visits over an extended period of time, Westchester County was the right fit to expand our program,” said Dr. Barakat.
MSK’s growing network of suburban outpatient centers also includes facilities in Basking Ridge, New Jersey, and on Long Island, in addition to Westchester County. A second New Jersey facility will soon be under construction in Monmouth County. More than 25 percent of all outpatient care provided by MSK is now delivered at these outpatient facilities outside of Manhattan.
“We are excited to open this remarkable facility,” said Dr. Thompson, “and look forward to building strong and long-lasting relationships with residents, local organizations, and other community-based programs.”
About the Mount Kisco Medical Group
The Mount Kisco Medical Group (MKMG) is a multi-specialty medical group that provides the highest quality medical care in 30 different locations throughout Westchester, Putnam, and Dutchess counties. Founded in 1946, MKMG has grown to over 300 physicians representing 40 different medical specialties with major campuses in Mount Kisco, Carmel, Katonah, Jefferson Valley, Fishkill, and Poughkeepsie. MKMG has on-site laboratory and radiology services, as well as endoscopy suites and infusion suites, rendering comprehensive care in one convenient location. MKMG physicians are frequently recognized as Best Doctors in respected publications: 58 of the 293 physicians featured in Westchester Magazine’s Top Doctors are MKMG doctors. Additionally, Best Doctors of America® awarded 79 MKMG physicians with Top Doctor Honors. Visit http://www.mkmg.com/ for more information.