Adventist to offer radiation oncology in Germantown
Upcounty center will treat cancer patients
Adventist HealthCare will open a new radiation oncology center in Germantown next year.
The $5.5 million, 6,500-square-foot facility is expected to open in early 2011 in the Seneca Meadows Corporate Center, said Dennis Hansen, president of Shady Grove Adventist Hospital in Rockville. The center eventually will occupy 10,500 square feet of office space.
Eleven radiation oncology facilities are now in the county, said Jay Apperson, a Maryland Department of the Environment spokesman.
Adventist also operates the Shady Grove Adventist Radiation Oncology Center in Rockville, and Holy Cross Hospital provides radiation therapy at its Radiation Treatment Center in Silver Spring. These are the only radiation oncology centers in the county accredited by the American College of Radiology.
Radiation oncology is a radiation treatment that damages the DNA of cancer cells and prevents them from growing and dividing by using high-powered X-rays or radioactive seed implants, said Jennifer Plaia, a spokeswoman for Shady Grove Adventist Hospital. Treatment can last six weeks, she said, and about 60 percent of Adventist's radiation patients live north of Rockville.
"For those who find themselves in need of cancer treatment, they often need weeks of treatment," Hansen said. "It's a service you need on a daily basis, so convenience is especially important."
Radiation therapy is used to treat a variety of types of the disease, including breast, prostate and lung cancer, Plaia said. More than 60 percent of cancer patients are treated by radiation oncologists.
The radiation oncology profession is growing fast and employment is expected to increase by 27 percent between 2008 and 2018, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The change is because of a growing elderly population and increased use of radiation therapy as the technology becomes safer and more effective, according to the bureau's website.
The radiation oncology center will be about two miles from the Shady Grove Adventist Emergency Center, 19731 Germantown Road, which opened in August 2006.
"We're looking for ways to get complementary services and not to duplicate services," Hansen said. "This location makes sense on a regional basis."
The 156-acre Seneca Meadows Corporate Center off of Seneca Meadows Parkway has 11 buildings comprising more than 700,000 square feet of office space, said Andy Chod, vice president of property owner and manager Minkoff Development Corporation. The radiation oncology center will be built within an existing building, he said.
The Germantown development firm, which has its headquarters on the property, is building a mixed use retail center that will be anchored by a Wegmans grocery store at the north end of the site, Chod said. The property will be served by the proposed Corridor Cities Transitway, which would connect the Shady Grove Metro station to Clarksburg via light rail or rapid bus.