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UMPC is the most extensive cancer-care network in the country with collective expertise from 4,000 health care professionals and research scientists, 600 affiliated doctors, and 30 academic, community, and specialty hospitals.
About University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
UPMC offers a large scale integrated network of cancer physicians and healthcare specialists and is a major non-governmental employer in Pennsylvania, with 80,000 employees. UPMC manages a range of academic, community, and specialty hospitals, more than 600 doctors’ offices and employs more than 4,000 researchers as well as offers an array of rehabilitation, retirement, and long-term care facilities.
UPMC provides a unique integrated health delivery system that offers excellence in transplantation, cancer, neurosurgery, psychiatry, rehabilitation, geriatrics, and women’s health. UPMC is a non-profit health care provider that reinvests back into the health care services such as the Mesothelioma Specialty Care program.
At the Hillman Cancer Center, the heart of the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, patients received the most effective and up to date advances in prevention, detection, diagnosis, and treatment. UPMC offers its patients a multidisciplinary approach with comprehensive and individualized care packages in the field of common as well as rare cancers.
University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Location & Overview
Here’s why patients chose UPMC Hillman Cancer Center as their mesothelioma treatment facility:
- Youngest cancer center ever to receive the NCI’s elite award
- Most extensive cancer-care network in the country
- Ranked No. 14 in the nation on the U.S. News & World Report Best Hospitals Honor Roll
- UPMC is No. 1 in Pittsburgh.
- Recognized by U.S. News & World Report as having one of the nation’s best cancer programs.
- Develops individualized treatment plans for each mesothelioma patient
The UPMC Hillman Cancer Center is located at:
5115 Centre Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 19104
University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Patient Experience
UPMC Hillman Cancer Center mission is to serve the community by providing outstanding patient care and to build the most innovative health care system. Therefore, the UPMC Hillman team is proud to harness their integrated capabilities such as clinical and technological innovation, research, and education to their patients and to their stakeholders in everything they do and creating a model that ensures the right care for everyone.
“A passion for innovation lies at the heart of UPMC’s success. UPMC’s unique strategy of combining clinical and research excellence with business-like discipline translates into high-quality patient care for both western Pennsylvanians and the global community.”
UPMC Hillman Cancer Center is committed to patient safety and to provide reliable and consistent quality care. By using the latest safety practices and technologies, the goal is to improve patient outcomes continuously. UPMC fosters a “culture of safety” — communication and transparency are essential to creating the partnership in which the patients and the medical team at UPMC Hillman feel comfortable.
“We are committed to taking every step possible to assure your safety — and that of your family and friends — while you are in our care.”
Getting excellent medical care is the priority as a patient at UPMC this includes the convenience, the comfort and support, and the caring and welcoming environment. The Wolff Center at UPMC has programs that are focused on enhancing the patients and their families experience. UPMC is a patient-centered medical home which focuses on building collaborative partnerships between the patient, the family, and the medical team, including care managers who will help coordinate the care plan.
The UPMC Hillman Cancer Center with its high patient focus recognizes that early detection and prompt treatment is essential for managing the disease to the most favorable outcome. Moreover, the development of personalized treatment plans is crucial for mesothelioma patients, because each stage and location requires its treatment strategy. The aim is to have patients visit the facility only one week of the initial contact to start treatment as soon as possible.
UPMC’s Mesothelioma Specialty Care Center
The UPMC Hillman Mesothelioma Specialty Care program was introduced in 2011 and focuses on providing the best possible therapies for mesothelioma patients. The Mesothelioma Specialty Care Center at UPMC Hillman Cancer Center offers a comprehensive treatment approach to this challenging disease.The Center brings together experts that treat pleural mesothelioma as well as mesothelioma teams that are fully equipped to handle peritoneal mesothelioma which affect the linings of the lung and abdomen.
The foundation for each treatment at UPMC is diagnostic measures, imaging scans and biopsy tests which help to identify the cancer stage and cell type of the patient. Extensive planning is the key to UPMC Hillman Cancer Center. A coordinator will guide you through the entire process, schedule appointments and serve as a liaison between the patient and treatment team.
A team of doctors works together to devise a customized treatment and health-care plan for each patient.
The team at UPMC Hillman Cancer Center specializes in:
- Thoracic surgical oncology
- Pain management
- Medical and radiation oncology
Currently, The UPMC Hillman Cancer Center’s mesothelioma program is led by the following doctors:
- Dr. Matthew Schuchert, MD
- Dr. Neil Christie, MD
- Dr. David L. Bartlett, MD
- Dr. J.F. Pingpank Jr., MD
- Dr. James Luketich, MD
Mesothelioma Treatment Options at University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
Numerous mesothelioma treatment options are available at the UMPC Hillman Cancer Center.
As one of the most experienced and most extensive treatment facilities, UPMC Hillman Cancer Center creates a comprehensive treatment plan for each case.
Treatments for mesothelioma may include:
Surgery: UPMC Hillman Cancer Center surgeons are pioneers in chemoperfusion treatment that involves a pleurectomy to prolong the survival and to increase the patients quality of life.
For pleural mesothelioma the team performs:
- Hyperthermic chemoperfusion (HIPEC) is applying concentrated heated chemotherapy directly into the tumor
- Pleurectomy surgery which is removing part of the pleura
- Pneumonectomy is surgery that removes parts of the lung
For peritoneal mesothelioma:
- HIPEC injects concentrated heated chemo into the affected area.
- Peritonectomy surgery removes the cancerous part of the abdominal lining.
- Resection is surgery to remove as much of the tumor as possible.
Chemotherapy: Medical oncologists at UPMC Hillman Cancer Center offer a full range of chemo and biologic therapies and treatment plans. This traditional cancer treatment can be a highly effective means of treating mesothelioma, especially when combined with other therapies.
Radiation Therapy: The Department of Radiation Oncology at UPMC Hillman has extensive skills in using leading-edge approaches to treat mesothelioma, such as Intensity-modulated radiation therapy and 4D computed tomography.
Clinical Trials, Studies & Research at University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
As an NCI-designated cancer center, UPMC takes part in many government-funded clinical trials.Through the commitment to excellence in research of cancer care, UPMC has changed lives for more than 30 years. The study takes place in the core and shared facilities in the Biomedical Science Tower, UPMC Montefiore, Scaife Hall, and the Biotechnology and Bioengineering Center.
UPMC Hillman Cancer Center researchers work with clinicians to advance promising research results into clinical trials.
This practice leads to early access and new and innovative cancer treatments throughout the whole UPMC Hillman Cancer Center network and to:
- Pioneer new cancer treatments every day through research
- Find better ways to treat cancer through clinical trials
- Invest in smart technology to help us better care for patients
- Reduce the burden of this disease and improve cancer treatment
The Surgical Oncology Department participates actively with the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute. The members of the Department support the Pittsburgh Cancer Institute programs of gastrointestinal oncology, urologic oncology, and biologic oncology.
A current clinical trial is with patients with pleural mesothelioma that can not be surgically removed. The patient will receive durvalumab, in combination with standard chemotherapy of pemetrexed and cisplatin as first-line treatment. This clinical trial aims to identify whether adding durvalumab to conventional chemotherapy will improve overall survival.
Durvalumab is a drug called a monoclonal antibody which is a specific type of protein. Scientific tests show that it works by allowing the immune system to detect cancer and reactivates the immune response. This drug can help to slow down the growth of cancer or may cause cancer cells to die.
Since 2010, UPMC Hillman is also participating in a mesothelioma clinical trial with Alimta, a chemotherapy involving pemetrexed. The study is evaluating the potential benefit of administering pemetrexed every 21 days after first-line chemotherapy to control or prevent tumor growth and spreading. The trial is estimated to wrap up in 2020.
University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Insurance Information
UPMC offers financial assistance by to providing medically necessary health care services to the residents in the facility’s communities. UMPC offers financial assisting programs regardless of their economic status or ability to pay. Patients can request financial assistance at the time of service or billing.
Individuals may be eligible for financial assistance if they:
- Have limited or no health insurance
- Are not eligible for government assistance, such as Medicare or Medicaid
- Can show they have financial need
- Live in the primary service area of a UPMC provider
- Provide UPMC with necessary information about household finances
Financial Assistance is available for eligible patients who need:
- Emergency medical services
- Non-elective services for urgent, life-threatening conditions, outside of the Emergency Department
- Other medically necessary services on a case-by-case basis
This service does not apply to individuals who live outside the service area and would be required to travel to seek treatment from UPMC. The service area includes all counties contiguous to a UPMC facility. Patients interested in working with the world-renowned mesothelioma team at UPMC Hillman can call and book an appointment at (412)-623-5864