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BJC in the News, Week of Jan. 7, 2019

Author: KATHRYN H./Tuesday, January 08, 2019

As a leader in health care, BJC and its hospitals and service organizations are frequently featured in the media, both locally and nationally. Following are some recent highlights:

Week of Jan. 7, 2019

BJC HealthCare is partnering with the St. Louis Post-Dispatch to present the "Nurses: The Heart of Health Care" awards. The contest was announced in the Post on Jan. 7.

On Jan. 6, KSDK-TV reported on a family whose toddler is being treated for an exceptionally rare genetic condition at St. Louis Children's Hospital. 

KMOV-TV reported Jan. 6 on Kaylah Rainey, a nationally ranked Belleville High School basketball player who had open heart surgery at SLCH several weeks ago to fix a congenital aortic abnormality.

The St. Louis Business Journal reported Jan. 9 on the new proton beam vault being built by the Siteman Cancer Center on the Washington University Medical Campus. (see text below) The Alton (Illinois) Riverbender News also reported on the new vault Jan. 11. 

The Alton (Illinois) Advantage News site reported Jan. 9 that Sarah Dierker, who served as a chaplain intern at Christian and Barnes-Jewish hospitals, will succeed retiring chaplain Bruce Baumgartner at Alton Memorial Hospital.

The Farmington (Missouri)Daily Journal Online ran a story Jan. 9 about Isaiah's Colorful Heart, an effort started three years ago by a child, that delivers toys to hospitalized children at Parkland Health Center and SLCH. 

Washington University emergency physician at BJH Larry Lewis, MD, talked to KWMU St. Louis Public Radio Jan. 10 about the alarming rise in serious scooter injuries in the area. 

St. Louis Business Journal Proton Beam story

Since October, construction crews have been assembling a three-story deep underground vault that would house a $32 million proton therapy machine at the Siteman Cancer Center in St. Louis.

The vault is being built beneath a parking garage on the Washington University Medical Campus, which also includes Barnes-Jewish Hospital and St. Louis Children’s Hospital.

When completed, the 40-foot deep vault will be home to a 120-ton Mevion cyclotron, which produces a focused beam of isolated protons for “pencil-beam scanning,” an advanced form of radiation therapy that pinpoints cancerous tumors and helps spare surrounding healthy tissues and organs.

Plans call for the 48,000-cubic-foot underground facility to be made mostly of high-density, 4 feet thick concrete walls for radiation containment.

Kadean Construction officials said work on the vault is expected to be completed in mid-2019, with patients having access to the facility in early 2020.

According to Washington University School of Medicine, the total cost of the project is $32 million, including $17 million for the proton therapy machine.

Siteman Cancer Center is also the home to another proton therapy technology, which was built in 2013. That machine precisely targets tumors using magnets that scatter the proton beam across the tumor. According to Siteman Cancer Center, the newest machine will complement the first as part of an array of radiation therapy options offered at the facility.

Kadean Vice President Matt Breeze also built Siteman’s first vault which began operation in 2013, and said the previous experience has been invaluable.

“The first vault was interesting because it was the first time it’s ever been done (in the world),” Breeze said. “We had to make sure that our quality control is in place, the planning, the communication is paramount. We’re blessed here in St. Louis, and I think people take it for granted, that we have an excellent educated workforce.”

Breeze said work on the second vault will involve 25-30 St. Louis-area subcontractors and their crews.

Both proton therapy units at Siteman Cancer Center are manufactured by Mevion Medical Systems.

In December, Siteman announced it would open a $38 million cancer center on the campus of Memorial Hospital East in Shiloh, Illinois, in 2020.

Siteman's main location is on the campus of Washington University's School of Medicine and Barnes-Jewish Hospital. Its other satellite locations are in Creve Coeur at Barnes-Jewish West County, St. Charles County at Barnes-Jewish St. Peters and in south St. Louis County.


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