Karmanos Cancer Institute Opens New Intensive Care Unit

Sep 20, 2012, 10:05 ET from Karmanos Cancer Institute

DETROIT, Sept. 20, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute in mid-town Detroit dedicated its new Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at its hospital, the Karmanos Cancer Center. The ICU is set to open Sept. 24. The 8,035 square-foot ICU will provide six private rooms, each designed with state-of-the-art equipment to serve the unique needs of cancer patients in need of critical care. The total cost of the project, including construction and specialized medical equipment, is approximately $3.8 million and is funded by philanthropic contributions. More than $3.7 million has been pledged to-date.

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The new ICU is located on the 5th floor of the Karmanos Cancer Center, a space previously used for the Phase 1 Clinical Trials Program which now occupies a newly renovated space on the main floor of Karmanos called the Eisenberg Center for Translational Therapeutics.

Prior to now, Karmanos patients received services in Harper University Hospital's ICU as part of the original contract agreement with the Karmanos Cancer Institute and the Detroit Medical Center. This is the first time an ICU will be located in the Karmanos Cancer Center.

"The care of our patients is always top priority and so is the compassion for which it's delivered," said Gerold Bepler, M.D., Ph.D., president and CEO, Karmanos Cancer Institute. "Our new ICU will help enhance the continuum of cancer care, providing immediate access to patient information for Karmanos' ICU intensivists (specially trained ICU physicians), staff, oncologists and surgeons.

"We're extremely grateful for our generous donors, including Karmanos staff, who have helped make our new ICU a reality. Their commitment to Karmanos makes it possible to provide our patients with the best treatment options that lead to the best possible outcomes.

A substantial leadership gift came from the Richard C. Devereaux Foundation.

"The Richard C. Devereaux Foundation is pleased to support the new Intensive Care Unit for Karmanos," said Devereaux Foundation President Leslie Devereaux. "My father passed away from lung cancer as a non-smoker in 1974. I personally understand the benefit of having not only the best medical team, but also access to state-of-the-art technology and the most current research advances to control cancer.

"To have my father's foundation benefiting cancer patients and their families at this most critical time in their lives is very fulfilling." 

Other top contributors include: Frances and Kenneth Eisenberg; General Motors Company; funds from Karmanos' 2012 Annual Dinner; Barbara M. and Fred A. Erb; Hermelin Family Support Foundation; Gertrude and Earl Stutzer Estate; Credit Union ONE; Frank L. and Helen Gofrank Foundation; Perri Family Foundation; Ramser-Morgan Foundation; and Dawn and Jack Treloar.

In addition, the Karmanos Cares Staff Campaign represents employees' contributions with a special Matching Challenge from Barbara and Fred Erb of $250,000. More than $245,000 has been pledged in the staff campaign.

Karmanos has been hiring critical care team members representing 16 full and part-time positions, offering around-the-clock critical cancer care. Ayman Soubani, M.D., professor, Department of Internal Medicine, Karmanos Cancer Center and Wayne State University School of Medicine, will serve at Medical Director.

Karen Goldman, R.N., MSN, AOCN, senior vice president and chief nursing officer at Karmanos, oversaw the ICU project.

"For our patients who are in need of intensive care services related to medical oncology, surgeries and bone marrow transplants, having an ICU located in our hospital will help enhance the efficiency and continue the quality of care for which Karmanos is known ," said Goldman. "The new unit also offers increased comfort for the patient's family, allowing family members to be close to their loved ones in this critical point in their cancer care continuum."

The ICU will offer 24/7 visitation and each room will be set up to accommodate the overnight stay of one family member.

In preparation for the new ICU, Karmanos opened an Intermediate Care Unit (IMCU) earlier this year. The five-bed IMCU serves as a step-down transition for cancer patients who no longer require ICU critical care. Karmanos will continue to operate the IMCU in addition to the ICU. 

For more information regarding Karmanos' cancer services call 1-800-KARMANOS (1-800-527-6266) or visit www.karmanos.org.

About the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute
Located in mid-town Detroit, Michigan, the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute is one of 41 National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer centers in the United States. Caring for nearly 6,000 new patients annually on a budget of $265 million, conducting more than 700 cancer-specific scientific investigation programs and clinical trials, Karmanos is among the nation's best cancer centers. Through the commitment of 1,000 staff, including nearly 300 physicians and researchers on faculty at the Wayne State University School of Medicine, and supported by thousands of volunteer and financial donors, Karmanos strives to prevent, detect and eradicate all forms of cancer. Its long-term partnership with the WSU School of Medicine enhances the collaboration of critical research and academics related to cancer care. Gerold Bepler, M.D., Ph.D., is the Institute's president and chief executive officer. For more information call 1-800-KARMANOS or go to www.karmanos.org.

SOURCE Karmanos Cancer Institute