From high-risk cancer screening and surveillance to diagnosis, treatment, and survivorship, MSK Westchester — our newest outpatient treatment center — brings Memorial Sloan Kettering’s singular focus on cancer to patients living in New York’s Westchester, Putnam, Dutchess, Orange, and Rockland Counties, as well as Fairfield County in Connecticut.
“This new site in West Harrison enables us to further 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,” says Craig B. Thompson, MSK President and CEO. “Building MSK closer to where patients live and providing the highest level of care is central to our mission, and we look forward to creating strong and long-lasting relationships with the community.”
Opened on October 6 and built to meet the unique needs of cancer patients, the 114,000-square-foot outpatient facility offers a staff of 140 professionals, including cancer surgeons, medical and radiation oncologists, and radiologists.
MSK has been part of the Westchester community since 1995, providing cancer care for 19 years in Sleepy Hollow, New York. MSK Westchester now joins this and the other outpatient locations in Basking Ridge, New Jersey, and on Long Island in Commack, Rockville Centre, and Hauppauge.
Advanced Treatments, Forward-Thinking Teams
“Our West Harrison physicians are thought leaders in cancer treatment and research, and many of them developed the current treatment standards in their respective fields,” says José Baselga, MSK’s Physician-in-Chief and Chief Medical Officer. “Patients not only will have access to the best care delivered by the most forward-thinking teams available but also will receive that treatment in a serene environment.”
Approximately 30 MSK medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, radiologists, and surgeons oversee the care of patients at the new facility. Specialized disease management teams offer diagnostic, treatment, and support services to people with a range of cancer types, including breast, gynecologic, gastrointestinal, lung, and urologic cancers, among others.
Less Travel, More Convenience, Same Expert Care
MSK Westchester will provide care that is exactly the same as patients would get if they were treated at any other MSK facility, but closer to home.
“We want patients to receive MSK’s outstanding clinical quality and expertise while experiencing the benefits of remaining close to home for as much of their cancer treatment journey as possible,” explains Richard Barakat, Deputy Physician-in-Chief for MSK’s Regional Care Network and Cancer Alliance. “If we can decrease the burden of travel, patients will spend less time commuting and more time in the comfort of their own homes. This is important in the healing process.”
At MSK Westchester, patients will receive the latest chemotherapy treatments and most advanced radiation therapy, and MSK breast, gastric, gynecologic, thoracic, urologic, and plastic and reconstructive surgeons will be on-site to provide all pre- and postsurgical care.
Patients will also benefit from access to a wide range of clinical trials — including early-stage studies of novel targeted anticancer drugs — as well as services including genetic counseling, nutrition consultations, and social work support.
In addition, MSK Westchester offers a spectrum of sophisticated imaging technologies including MRI, CT, PET, ultrasound, and mammography for the diagnosis and staging of cancer, as well as a state-of-the-art radiation treatment planning and delivery system with two linear accelerators (the machine that creates the high-energy radiation used to treat cancer).
Skilled interventional radiologists will perform breast biopsies and place ports to deliver chemotherapy, among other procedures.
A Total Patient-Centered Experience
From the moment patients and caregivers pull up to MSK Westchester, they’ll experience a streamlined, comfortable, seamless introduction to the facility.
Ample parking is provided directly in front of the entrance, and Wi-Fi is available throughout the building. A special tag is given to each patient upon check-in that uses real-time GPS technology to pinpoint where a patient is sitting, whether in a common area, a waiting room, or even in the outdoor garden. This allows people to move freely around the campus while waiting for a physician appointment or a test result.
An innovative partnership with the nationally recognized multispecialty Mount Kisco Medical Group (MKMG) provides yet another level of patient convenience. MKMG physicians who also have consultant appointments to MSK’s medical staff will be available to provide primary and non-oncology care, including cardiology, gastroenterology, gynecology, infectious disease, and internal medicine services.
A grab-and-go food service offers meals and snacks prepared daily by a popular local marketplace and café.
Our Doctors Live in the Community
“When we began thinking about clinicians who might want to work in West Harrison, rather than thinking only about hiring new people who may not be familiar with the MSK culture, we came up with a new model,” Dr. Barakat explains. “We have physicians and surgeons who have been at MSK — in some cases for many years — and even chiefs of services, who live in the community and who will be working at West Harrison. This allows us to truly infuse the MSK multidisciplinary culture into this new facility.”
Physicians and surgeons who practice at MSK’s Manhattan locations but reside in the Hudson Valley are extending their practices into their own community. “MSK doctors, nurses, and support staff will be seeing patients not only professionally but also as part of their daily lives,” Dr. Barakat observes. “They’ll be running into these same people in their churches, their temples, at the grocery, at social events. We are already full participants in the life of the community and are here to help.”
On October 1, MSK leadership along with Harrison Supervisor/Mayor Ron Belmont; broadcaster, cancer survivor, and MSK patient Stacey Sager; and more than 150 guests gathered to celebrate the opening of MSK West Harrison.