The Wake Forest Baptist Comprehensive Cancer Center is one of just three NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the state of North Carolina. It offers nine cancer care locations across its network, which covers an area of 58 continuous counties in North Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia. The center is focused on improving cancer outcomes, patient advocacy, and community engagement through cutting-edge research, treatment, education, outreach, and multidisciplinary training. The center employs more than 400 physicians and researchers tasked with translating scientific knowledge and innovation directly into patient care.
Facts about Wake Forest Baptist Comprehensive Cancer Center
Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center is the only hospital in the region to be named to Newsweek’s 2023 list of America’s Best Cancer Hospitals.
The Wake Forest Cancer Center was designated a Comprehensive Cancer Center by the National Cancer Institute in 1990.
The hospital is part of Advocate Health, the fifth-largest nonprofit health system in the United States.
Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center was named one of Becker’s Hospital Review’s 100 Great Hospitals in America.
The hospital has been ranked as a “Best Hospital” for cancer treatment by U.S. News & World Report.
The cancer center boasts 129 nationally and internationally renowned experts who provide specialized treatment through 13 disease-oriented and thematic teams. Research activities are led by 140 faculty members from 29 departments.
Wake Forest Baptist Comprehensive Cancer Center offers cancer patients access to more than 200 clinical trials each year.
Clinical and basic research activities at Wake Forest Baptist Cancer Center are funded by grants totaling $1.3 million from the NIH, NCI, foundations and societies, and industry.
The center’s Stem Cell Transplant and Cellular Therapy (SCTCT) Program has performed transplants on more than 2,600 patients since the first transplant was performed in May 1990.
The Cancer Center Second Opinion (C2O) program was launched in 2017. Since that time, 632 patients enrolled, with 536 completing full evaluations. Of those patients, 48% chose to stay for all or a portion of care at the Cancer Center. Roughly 4% of second-opinion patients have had a diagnosis change as a result of going through the program, with 26% of patients having a different treatment recommendation compared to their outside provider.
The Cancer Center’s Surgical Oncology service conducts roughly 1,500 major operative cases per year, and more than 8,000 outpatient visits.
Wake Forest Baptist’s Hyperthermic Intraperitoneal Chemotherapy (HIPEC) Program was established more than 30 years ago and has treated over 2,000 patients.
Wake Forest Baptist Comprehensive Cancer Center dates back to 1902 when the Wake Forest School of Medicine was founded as a two-year medical school on the campus of Wake Forest College. The North Carolina Baptist Hospital opened in 1923. By 1941 the medical school had expanded to a four-year program and moved to Winston-Salem.
The Medical Center has a long history of innovation in cancer treatment. Established in the early 1960s, it was the first facility in North Carolina to use cobalt to treat cancer patients, and in 1969 it was the first in the nation to use ultrasound to detect prostate cancer. The center became a National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated cancer center in 1974 and in 1990 achieved designation as a Comprehensive Cancer Center.
The program introduced one of the country’s first bone marrow transplantation programs, and the first Gamma Knife in the state of North Carolina.
In 2001, the Medical Center broke ground for a new Outpatient Comprehensive Cancer Center that consolidated all of the center’s outpatient oncology services under one roof.
Mesothelioma and Lung Cancer Care at Wake Forest Baptist Comprehensive Cancer Center
Patients diagnosed with lung cancer or malignant pleural mesothelioma are treated through the center’s nationally recognized Lung Cancer/Thoracic program, where they’ll be offered the latest therapies and treatment options. The highly rated multidisciplinary team of thoracic surgical oncologists, medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, pulmonologists, and radiologists guide all treatment and care decisions in collaboration with patients and their families, working to achieve outcomes in keeping with patients’ goals. Wake Forest’s treatment offerings include chemotherapy, immunotherapy, radiation technologies, and minimally invasive robotic surgery. The team is often sought for expedited evaluations and second opinions. The Thoracic Oncology Program offers more than 25 ongoing clinical research trials and a robust second opinion program and is a Lung Cancer Screening Center of Excellence.
Wake Forest Baptist Comprehensive Cancer Center’s research is focused on improving cancer outcomes, patient advocacy, and community engagement. Its cutting-edge research activities are focused on four programmatic areas: Cancer Prevention and Control; Neuro-Oncology; Cancer Genetics and Metabolism; and Signaling and Biotechnology. With more than 250 clinical trials available for patients with various types and stages of cancer, Wake Forest Baptist Comprehensive Cancer Center offers more cancer-related clinical trials than any other hospital in the region.
Notable Staff and Mesothelioma Specialists
The physicians at Wake Forest Baptist Comprehensive Cancer Center understand that being diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma is the start of a complex journey for patients. The thoracic oncology program is led by Dr. William Jeffrey Petty, a medical oncologist and hematologist who specializes in treating patients with lung cancer, malignant pleural mesothelioma, and mediastinal diseases. Patients diagnosed with peritoneal mesothelioma will be treated by a highly experienced team of surgeons and oncologists led by Dr. Edward A. Levine, Chief of Surgical Oncology Service.Get Your FREE Mesothelioma Packet
Written by Terri Oppenheimer
Terri Oppenheimer has been writing about mesothelioma and asbestos topics for over ten years. She has a degree in English from the College of William and Mary. Terri’s experience as the head writer of our Mesothelioma.net news blog gives her a wealth of knowledge which she brings to all Mesothelioma.net articles she authors.
Page Edited by Patient Advocate Dave Foster
Dave has been a mesothelioma Patient Advocate for over 10 years. He consistently attends all major national and international mesothelioma meetings. In doing so, he is able to stay on top of the latest treatments, clinical trials, and research results. He also personally meets with mesothelioma patients and their families and connects them with the best medical specialists and legal representatives available.