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ThedaCare Regional Cancer Center
March 12, 2021

ThedaCare Comprehensive Cancer Care

ThedaCare Regional Cancer Center operates five Centers of Excellence (CoE) in the Fox Valley.

March 12, 2021

ThedaCare Centers of Excellence Focus on Comprehensive Cancer Care

APPLETON, Wis. – ThedaCare Regional Cancer Center is currently operating five Centers of Excellence (CoE) for cancer care in the Fox Valley. The ThedaCare Breast Cancer CoE was accredited in 2011. In 2019, ThedaCare began developing four more CoE, focusing on cancers of the blood (hematology), head and neck, gastrointestinal tract (GI) and thoracic (chest) area. This article will focus on the GI Cancer CoE.

Centers of Excellence are established to improve knowledge and increase expertise on particular areas of focus and to make the best use of resources available. CoE are used in all types of businesses and industries as well as in government, military, educational and health care institutions.

“A health care CoE is a collective of medical professionals who put aside individualistic thinking to treat a health care problem, such as colon cancer, with a multi-disciplinary approach,” explained Anthony Eclavea, MD, an interventional radiologist with ThedaCare Regional Medical Center-Appleton and Chair of the ThedaCare Gastrointestinal Cancer CoE. “Everybody here wants to make cancer care more comprehensive, with a focus on the patient, helping guide them successfully through diagnosis, treatment and into survivorship.”

Dr. Eclavea explained that as part of the CoE, ThedaCare medical teams hold weekly tumor review boards to discuss each patient’s scenario to determine their best treatment plan moving forward.

“We find out where cancer is in their body, which helps us stage how advanced the cancer is and forms our treatment recommendations as the patient travels through the treatment process to reach survivability,” he said. “We have a wonderful complement of disciplines in our GI Cancer Center of Excellence as do all ThedaCare CoE. We have skilled surgeons, medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, pathologists and interventional radiologists, along with genetic counseling, nurse navigators, palliative care, dietary counseling, physical therapy and ancillary cancer care teams to help the patient navigate through their treatment.”

The goal is to create a more systematic workflow so the patient’s treatment is more efficient and transparent; so they know what’s going on and why.

“We want to provide everything a patient needs right here,” he said. “The ability to stay home with family and friends has a huge impact on a patient’s outcome.”

Dr. Eclavea added the commitment of resources ThedaCare has made to computer automation is providing the technology that “makes the whole process of treatment more efficient for everyone involved in cancer care.”

ThedaCare patient care teams are an integral part of a patient’s treatment and recovery. Each ThedaCare care team consists of an oncologist (MD), an advanced practice clinician (either a nurse practitioner or physician’s assistant), a clinical/infusion nurse, a medical assistant, a navigator, a scheduler and a patient financial advocate.

“They are designed to assist patients and their families on the road to good health in every way possible from diagnosis through survivorship,” said Donna Boehm, Director of ThedaCare Cancer Care Services. “Our CoE medical professionals and patient care team members are committed to cancer care, with the patient at the center of all activity. There is a level of commitment at ThedaCare that I’ve never seen before. We are fortunate to serve the patients and families of Northeast and Central Wisconsin.”

About ThedaCare

For more than 110 years, ThedaCare® has been committed to improving the health of the communities it serves in northeast and central Wisconsin. The organization delivers care to more than 600,000 residents in 18 counties and employs approximately 7,000 health care professionals. ThedaCare has 180 points of care, including seven hospitals. As an organization committed to being a leader in Population Health, team members are dedicated to empowering people to live their best lives through easy access to individualized care, supporting each person’s own health and wellbeing. ThedaCare also partners with communities to understand unique needs, finding solutions together, and encouraging health awareness and action. ThedaCare is the first in Wisconsin to be a Mayo Clinic Care

Network Member, giving specialists the ability to consult with Mayo Clinic experts on a patient’s care. ThedaCare is a not-for-profit health system with a level II trauma center, comprehensive cancer treatment, stroke and cardiac programs, as well as primary care. For more information, visit or follow ThedaCare on social media. Members of the media should call Cassandra Wallace, Public and Media Relations Consultant at 920.442.0328 or the ThedaCare Regional Medical Center-Neenah switchboard at 920.729.3100 and ask for the marketing person on call.