The Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin health network announced today a partnership with Legion Healthcare Partners, which will aid the health network’s plan to provide technologically-evolved proton therapy for cancer patients who require radiation therapy. Proton therapy supports refined dosing strategies for cancer patients to increase the effectiveness of treatment and decrease side effects. To provide this treatment option, the Froedtert & the MCW health network will begin construction in early 2023 to house the new proton therapy system at the Froedtert & MCW Clinical Cancer Center at Froedtert Hospital campus. 

Currently, proton therapy is not available in Wisconsin. The health network expects to begin treating patients with this advanced radiation technology through the Froedtert & MCW Cancer Network in the second half of 2024. The addition of proton therapy will make precision radiation therapy more accessible to adult and pediatric cancer patients who currently travel out of state for this treatment.

“Partnering with Legion Healthcare Partners enables us to more quickly make proton therapy accessible to cancer patients throughout Wisconsin and beyond,” said Tina Curtis, Vice President of Cancer Services, Froedtert Health. “Our mission continues to be focused on expanding access to academic medicine, and our goal is to increase the availability of precision treatment options and to provide the right care in the right place at the right time. The partnership with Legion Healthcare Partners and the addition of proton therapy for our patients enables us to continue to move our mission and our goals forward.”

 “We are excited to partner with the Froedtert & Medical College of Wisconsin health network to bring one of the most advanced radiation oncology treatment options to Wisconsin,” said John Styles, Chief Executive Officer of Legion. “Our team has a 23-year track record of assisting large non-profit health care systems with feasibility, design, construction, and successfully implementing and managing the complex operation of proton therapy systems and the significant advantages proton therapy treatment brings to world-class health systems like Froedtert & MCW.”

Proton therapy delivers a precisely targeted dose of radiation directly to a tumor using high-energy beams of proton particles rather than X-rays. Its refined control capabilities allow a higher dose of radiation because it can avoid healthy tissues and organs near the tumor. These capabilities translate to more effective cancer control, with reduced side effects and better quality of life for patients.

“The Froedtert & MCW Cancer Network has been at the forefront of the evolution of radiation therapy for decades,” said Christopher Schultz, MD, FACR, Medical College of Wisconsin Professor and Chairman of the Department of Radiation Oncology at the Clinical Cancer Center. “We have considerable clinical, technical, and administrative experience in developing clinical programs with the goal of providing more personalized, effective treatments. Proton therapy supports our ongoing commitment to developing and offering world-class, innovative cancer care to all patients in the diverse communities we serve.”

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