Participant in National Effort to Enhance Care for Lung Cancer Patients

Mary Bird Perkins – Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center Selected to Participate in National Effort to Enhance Care for Lung Cancer Patients


(Baton Rouge, La.) Mary Bird Perkins – Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center is one of only five facilities throughout the country selected to participate in a project with the Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC) to address disparities in cancer care for vulnerable populations. The ACCC Optimal Care Coordination Model for Lung Cancer Patients on Medicaid project seeks to reduce barriers to care through development of a care coordination model that will leverage effective partnerships among cancer programs and practices, community organizations, patients, and primary care and specialty providers. The three-year project is funded by the Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation.

The Cancer Center is a leader in lung cancer prevention, diagnosis, treatment and survivorship, most notably with the region’s only Lung Cancer Multidisciplinary Care (MDC) Team. The MDC team, comprised of physician specialists and support staff, collaborate to ensure patients receive the highest level of comprehensive cancer care available.

“As a team, we are always working to enhance the care we provide to lung cancer patients,” said Brad Vincent, M.D., interventional pulmonologist and chair of the Cancer Center’s Lung Cancer MDC Team. “And with Louisiana’s high cancer mortality rate, especially prevalent in disparate populations, our MDC team is always looking at ways to bolster cancer care for those who have barriers to accessing early detection and treatment services. This project will enhance initiatives already in place and highlight challenges for all cancer centers as we work collaboratively toward improvements that simplify care coordination for Medicaid patients.”

As evidenced in an environmental scan conducted by ACCC, patients with lung cancer covered by Medicaid have poorer outcomes, including higher incidence rates, later stage at diagnosis, and poorer survival rates, even after adjustment for stage of diagnoses. Recent studies by Markt S, et al. and Rong X, et al., published in the journal Cancer further affirm gaps in cancer treatment and worse outcomes among cancer patients on Medicaid and uninsured patients as compared to those with private insurance.

“ACCC is excited to lead the charge for improved health equity in lung cancer treatment through this project,” said Christian Downs, JD, MHA, Executive Director of ACCC.  “This initiative will harness the ACCC membership’s commitment to health equity and unmatched expertise in treating cancer at the community level to develop a care coordination model to streamline access to care and resources for this vulnerable population.”

From a competitive applicant pool, five cancer programs have been selected to participate as Development Sites for the project. By serving as a Development Site, Mary Bird Perkins – Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center will help lay the foundation for development of a care coordination model that will seek to overcome identified social, financial, and institutional barriers to care for this vulnerable patient population.  The model will then be tested in the community cancer centers across the country.

The Cancer Center offers an array of lung cancer screening and treatment support services. Since its launch in November 2012, the Lung Cancer Screening Clinic has provided hundreds of screenings, and diagnosed the disease in its earliest stages for a number of patients. With this success and focus on quality, the Cancer Center was the first site in Louisiana recognized as a Center for Lung Screening Excellence by the Lung Cancer Alliance (LCA). The LCA acknowledges organizations adhering to its quality standards, referred to as the National Framework for Excellence.

Additional lung cancer services offered at the Cancer Center include:

  • Free help to quit cigarette smoking and other tobacco products
  • Clinical trials for the treatment of lung cancer

For more information on the ACCC Optimal Care Coordination for Lung Cancer Patients on Medicaid project visit the ACCC’s website at For information of lung cancer services at the Cancer Center, visit


About Mary Bird Perkins – Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center
As a regional destination for cancer care, Mary Bird Perkins – Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center offers the most advanced technology and services provided by a dedicated team of nationally-recognized oncology experts. The Cancer Center provides best-practice, comprehensive care at every stage of the cancer journey, including disease site-specific multidisciplinary care teams, a robust clinical research program, extensive supportive care services and is the only facility in the Gulf South with the revolutionary Leksell Gamma Knife® Icon™. As a nonprofit organization, donor generosity is essential to sustaining the mission of improving survivorship and lessening the burden of cancer for so many throughout Southeast Louisiana and beyond. For more information on the Cancer Center, and how you can become involved, please visit

About the Association of Community Cancer Centers
The Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC) is the leading advocacy and education organization for the multidisciplinary cancer care team. More than 23,000 cancer care professionals from 2,000 hospitals and practices nationwide are affiliated with ACCC. Providing a national forum for addressing issues that affect community cancer programs, ACCC is recognized as the premier provider of resources for the entire oncology care team. Our members include medical and radiation oncologists, surgeons, cancer program administrators and medical directors, senior hospital executives, practice managers, pharmacists, oncology nurses, radiation therapists, social workers, and cancer program data managers. For more information, visit ACCC’s website at Facebook,Twitter LinkedIn ACCCBuzz.