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Kansas Governor issues proclamation to honor The University of Kansas Cancer Center’s earning highest designation from the National Cancer Institute

The cancer center is one of just 53 centers in the country to be awarded Comprehensive status from the NCI.

By Kay Hawes

September 02, 2022

Kansas Governor Laura Kelly has proclaimed September “Comprehensive Cancer Centers Awareness Month” in recognition of The University of Kansas Cancer Center becoming designated as a “Comprehensive” cancer center by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). This is the highest level of recognition awarded by the NCI and is the gold standard for cancer centers.

“The KU Cancer Center is a top choice for those looking for world-class care – something this new designation, the gold standard for a cancer center, makes clear,” Governor Kelly said. “Thanks to the incredible leadership at the University of Kansas, we are saving thousands of lives and conquering cancer starting right here in Kansas.”

Governor Kelly issues proclamations to honor and celebrate events and issues that are of significant importance to Kansans.

group of individuals surround governor kelly as she signs the proclamation

In addition to Comprehensive status, KU Cancer Center was awarded a five-year, $13.8 million grant to support the center’s research programs and shared equipment and resources. It also received an “outstanding” rating by NCI reviewers.

“The NCI Comprehensive designation means that we are in the same league as the best cancer centers in the country. And we could not have achieved that milestone without the unwavering bipartisan support of the Kansas legislature and governor,” noted Roy Jensen, MD, director of the KU Cancer Center. “This designation will give us greater access to federal funding and research dollars so that we can attract and retain renowned researchers and physician-scientists, but the most important result is that patients in Kansas and across the region can be cared for by top cancer experts and receive the most cutting-edge treatments in the world.”

The University of Kansas Cancer Center has nearly 350 researchers and 150 disease-specific oncologists. They conduct all phases of cancer research, from laboratory studies to clinical trials to population-based studies that address environmental and behavioral factors that contribute to cancer.

Research operations at the KU Cancer Center have already contributed an estimated $2.5 billion in economic impact to the region since the center’s last renewal in 2017. Those numbers are expected to increase with the expansion that is anticipated to accompany the KU Cancer Center achieving Comprehensive designation. University administrators note that the growth of the cancer center has contributed to additional advancements at the university.

“When the KU Cancer Center was officially notified that it had been awarded the prestigious comprehensive designation from the National Cancer Institute, it was one of the proudest moments in the history of the University of Kansas,” said Douglas A. Girod, MD, chancellor of the University of Kansas. “I am confident that this proclamation will make more Kansas residents aware that they are living in a state where they have access to the best cancer prevention, treatment and research in the country.”

This article was originally posted at The University of Kansas Medical Center's website

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