Peeples Cancer Institute

Hamilton Health Care System’s Peeples Cancer Institute, scheduled to open in January 2020, in Dalton.

Finishing touches are being added to Hamilton Health Care System’s Peeples Cancer Institute, scheduled to open in January of 2020, in Dalton.

The 64,000-square-foot facility, estimated at $46.5 million, will house outpatient cancer diagnostic and treatment services in one location. The team of medical and radiation oncologists, surgeons and clinical support staff will work collaboratively in shared spaces to provide state-of-the-art care in a healing, nurturing environment.

“Every aspect of Peeples Cancer Institute is focused on the needs of our patients and families so that we provide an outstanding patient experience and the best clinical outcomes,” said Jeff Myers, president and CEO of Hamilton Health Care System. “Our goal is to foster collaboration, communication and education among physicians and our medical teams to advance and enhance our care for patients. They are our No. 1 priority.”

The new four-story facility, located on Memorial Drive across the street from the main hospital entrance, includes a street-level connector to the main hospital along with associated hardscaping and green space, creating a campus-like environment.

The design and development of the facility incorporated direct feedback from focus groups including cancer survivors treated at Hamilton, cancer survivors treated elsewhere, local caregivers and community volunteers.

Some of the features suggested by the group include: facility with natural light; reception areas and infusion suites featuring floor-to-ceiling windows and an open floor plan; entrance with convenient access for patients, including covered drop-off locations; two-story parking garage; hospitality services upon arrival; and public areas including a bistro, family alcove, quiet reflection room and community resource center.

A patient navigator will assist newly diagnosed patients by connecting them with helpful resources, answering questions, providing emotional support and walking them through their journey.

In addition to updated design features, Peeples Cancer Institute will showcase the talents of local and regional artists, with the work of several cancer survivors represented in the collection. The Whitfield Healthcare Foundation and Hamilton Health Care System have partnered with the Creative Arts Guild to develop a healing arts program, with opportunities for community sponsorships available. For more information about sponsorships, please call 706-272-6128.

“We are embracing an arts in medicine program to enhance the health and well-being of patients,” said Jane Snipes, Whitfield Healthcare Foundation executive director. “Through a strategic partnership with the Creative Arts Guild, we are creating a stronger, healthier, more vibrant community for all of us.”

Additional plans for the cancer institute include:

♦ Spacious and welcoming reception, registration and waiting areas

♦ Personal guidance for patients through every step of their care

♦ Comfortable private or semi-private infusion spaces

♦ Enhanced radiation therapies, including the Varian® TrueBeam linear accelerator and 4-D CT Simulator

♦ Women’s imaging and diagnostic services with enhanced 3D mammography and ultrasound capabilities

♦ Bistro featuring coffee, smoothies, light fare and a comfortable seating area

♦ Reflection room for quiet contemplation and relaxation

♦ Public plaza with beautiful garden spaces, landscaping, and water features

Radiation oncology will continue to be provided by Arif Ali, MD, and Nick Galanopoulus, MD, with Northwest Georgia Radiation Oncology. Lisa Duhaime, MD, and Freda Hoffman, APRN, will provide medical oncology services. Both services are currently located at Hamilton Cancer Institute in the Burkett Building at Hamilton but will move to the new facility when it is completed.

Local philanthropists Shelby and Willena Peeples have provided a legacy gift toward the development of the cancer institute and furthered Hamilton’s vision for transformational care.

“We are indebted to the Peeples for their commitment to this project, not only financially, but as they advocate and provide leadership and inspiration for our community,” said Myers. “Like the Peeples, our Foundation is committed to supporting what our patients and families need. This project offers an opportunity to make a difference in thousands of lives in northwest Georgia. We encourage individuals and businesses to commit to Hamilton’s vision.”

According to Shelby Peeples, “We owe it to our community to provide the best facilities we can. It’s all about the people we serve.”

Peeples Cancer Institute will replace the existing Judd Cancer Center located in the Burkett Building off of Broadrick Drive. The new radiation oncology pavilion in Peeples Cancer Institute will be named for the Judd family whose trust has provided annual contributions to advance Hamilton’s cancer program.

Hamilton’s cancer program is accredited by the Commission on Cancer, a consortium of professional organizations dedicated to improving survival and quality of life for cancer patients through standard-setting, prevention, research, education and the monitoring of comprehensive quality care.

Peeples Cancer Institute will offer residents of Northwest Georgia state-of-the-art cancer and hematologic care with a personalized focus. Complementary and integrative therapies will be available as well as access to research, clinical trials and second opinions, both at Peeples Cancer Institute and at major cancer centers, as requested.

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