Scripps MD Anderson - Stewardship Report

Enhancing Treatment and Care at Scripps MD Anderson Cancer Center

Generous Donors Fuel Advanced Cancer Care | Stewardship Report 2020

Our generous donors enable some of the most innovative minds in oncology to collaborate on new research and treatment protocols, and enable an ever-growing number of patients who seek care at Scripps MD Anderson to live long and full lives.

An artist's rendering of Prebys Cancer Center on the campus of Scripps Mercy Hospital San Diego.

Building on a Legacy of Innovative Health Care

There’s one thing that made possible the construction of the state-of-the-art Prebys Cancer Center on the campus of Scripps Mercy Hospital, San Diego: philanthropy. The $59 million state-of-the-art cancer center, located on Fifth Avenue in Hillcrest, was made possible by late philanthropist Conrad Prebys, a longtime Scripps supporter. When the Prebys Cancer Center officially opens its doors in late summer 2021, patients in central and south San Diego will have access to Scripps MD Anderson’s leading-edge cancer treatments and support services close to home.

Innovative treatments that will be offered in the comprehensive outpatient facility include a chemotherapy/immune therapy infusion suite and radiation therapy with the most advanced TrueBeam linear accelerators available. Patient support services will be interwoven into the center’s programs in the newly renovated Woltman Family College Building. Once renovations are complete, the Woltman Family College Building will also provide spiritual and palliative care, integrative medicine, ongoing support for patients with cancer, graduate medical education and more.

*This article was published prior to Prebys Cancer Center’s opening on September 13, 2021.

Paying It Forward

“We’re all in. We’re proud to give and thankful that we are able to partner with Scripps to advance cancer treatment for all patients today and for generations to come.” — Fred Allen, Grateful patient

The medical team at Scripps MD Anderson Cancer Center stands on a stairway, representing team-based environment.

Drs. Mary Wilde, Ray Lin, Sonia Ali, Thomas Buchholz, Scripps MD Anderson Cancer Center, Scripps Clinic, and staff 

Expansion on the Torrey Pines Mesa

When donors feel passionate about advancing cancer treatment and care, incredible developments take shape. The Scripps MD Anderson Cancer Center’s Torrey Pines location was built in 2012, with future expansion in mind. Thanks to donor investments, the facility recently expanded by 16,500 square feet to encompass a multidisciplinary clinic for newly diagnosed patients with cancer. The new north hub provides patients with access to professionals from every area of oncological medicine, including medical oncologists, surgeons, radiation oncologists, oncology nurses, genetic counselors, palliative care providers, social workers, nurse navigators and more, all in one collaborative, team-based environment.

Donors Fuel Rapid Technological Innovation

Thanks to generous donor investment, Scripps MD Anderson recently added several Varian TrueBeam linear accelerators — one of the world’s most sophisticated radiation oncology technologies — to its therapeutic toolkit. Patients with breast, lung, prostate and other complex cancers can now be treated with this advanced radiation oncology technology that utilizes a tightly conformed beam to eradicate tumors while sparing healthy tissue. The TrueBeam is the newest iteration of image-guided radiation therapy, which can follow moving targets, such as lung tumors that shift as a patient breathes. While this incredible technology enables amazing patient care — it also is quite expensive. Generous philanthropy has been essential to helping Scripps make technological innovations, such as TrueBeam, available throughout the region.

Dr. Noemi Doohan, shown here in a face shield and mask, was the first patient enrolled in the Scripps MD Anderson study site.

As a Patient, Physician Is Committed to Research 

In a multi-site clinical trial led by MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, researchers are studying how well hypofractionated partial breast irradiation works in treating patients with early stage breast cancer. The randomized study delivers a high dose of radiation over a one-week or three-week period to determine if the reduced timeframe may kill more tumor cells and have fewer side effects.

Noemi Doohan, MD, assistant program director for Scripps Chula Vista Family Medicine Residency program was the first patient enrolled in the Scripps MD Anderson study site. A longtime teacher in family medicine residency programs before joining Scripps, Dr. Doohan was diagnosed with breast cancer in December 2020. With a PhD in molecular biology/biochemistry, an MD from Stanford and a Master’s in public health with a global health emphasis, research has played a crucial role in her education and teaching. “I am a true believer in science and, through my participation in this trial, hope to inspire others to confidently participate in clinical research,” Dr. Doohan says. “It was a completely natural step for me to participate in this study.”

A nurse navigator with Scripps MD Anderson Cancer Center smiles and talks with a patient in San Diego.

Giving Empathy a Place to Thrive

Providing world-class cancer treatment means providing access to comprehensive clinical care. It also means supporting each patient throughout their journey by offering an extra layer of support during and after treatment. These vital patient support services — launched with generous donor investment — provide an array of emotional, physical and spiritual wrap-around services.

Scripps MD Anderson Cancer Center nurse navigators offer guidance through the cancer care system to ensure timely diagnosis, treatment and support; palliative care services and social workers provide comfort during all stages of a patient’s treatment. Recent donor investment enabled the creation of healing environments with special spaces, including calming gardens for patients to use between treatments. And with additional philanthropic support, Scripps MD Anderson plans to further expand services to include oratory and meditation space, an educational library with trusted resources, a multi-purpose room for educational offerings, yoga, movement and support groups, as well as a wig bank and prosthetics boutique with private fitting spaces.

Learn more about ways you can support Scripps MD Anderson Cancer Center. Please call Barbara Edwards at 858-678-6344.