(Baton Rouge, La.) The Commission on Medical Physics Education Programs (CAMPEP) has granted full reaccreditation to the Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center Medical Physics Residency Program. Mary Bird Perkins is the first center in Louisiana to establish such a program, helping provide highly specialized professionals to the workforce and enhanced care for cancer patients. Mary Bird Perkins has been accredited by CAMPEP since 2014.
“Medical physicists, in conjunction with radiation oncologists, play a vital role in designing precise, effective treatment plans. It’s a complex discipline and it’s a field in which there’s a national shortage of qualified medical physicists,” said Todd Stevens, president and CEO, Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center. “As a training ground for these highly sought-after professionals, we are advancing the care available here locally, and throughout the country and world as well.”
Stevens referenced the sophisticated Gamma Knife Icon, which is used to noninvasively treat brain tumors and other central nervous system disorders, and how it would not be possible to install, operate and maintain the technology without the Cancer Center’s robust medical physics team.
Any individual who wishes to sit for board certification in any medical physics subfield must have graduated from a clinical training program (residency) accredited by CAMPEP.
Using a collaborative approach, Mary Bird Perkins formed a medical physics consortium with multiple affiliate sites, including Willis-Knighton Cancer Center in Shreveport, LA and the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, MS. This allows for the expansion of residency training opportunities and resources. In conjunction with its affiliates, Mary Bird Perkins has one of the largest radiation oncology physics residency training programs in the United States.
“This education model provides more residency opportunities, especially for those enrolled in the Mary Bird Perkins – LSU Medical Physics Graduate Program,” said Jonas Fontenot, Ph.D., chief of medical physics and chief operating officer, Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center “With one of the largest residency programs in the country, CAMPEP reaccreditation demonstrates our program’s readiness to produce highly-trained and credentialed professionals who are ready to perform at the highest levels.”
A medical physicist brings a unique perspective to the clinical team in a radiation oncology program: that of a scientist trained in physics, including radiological physics; and also in clinical, basic medical, and radiobiological sciences. The physicist performs an important role working along with the radiation oncologist to assure the accurate delivery of all aspects of a treatment prescription.
For additional information about Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center’s medical physics residency program please visit www.marybird.org/physics.
Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center is a regional cancer care organization that has been fighting cancer for more than 40 years. With five centers in Baton Rouge, Covington, Hammond, Houma and Gonzales, its service area encompasses 18 parishes across southeast Louisiana. For more information, please visit www.marybird.org.