The Jefferson Kimmel Cancer Center recently announced it will partner with the Star Health Network to provide Jefferson’s advanced expertise in oncology and genomic diagnostics to Star’s India-based partner hospitals.
The partnership will enable a comprehensive, proactive approach to cancer care that enhances personalized treatments based on advanced genomic testing of a patient’s cancer.
The Jefferson Kimmel Cancer Center operates a world-class molecular analysis laboratory (MAL) to support the demands of an increasingly genomics-based approach in the practice of oncology and to promote genomics-based translational research in cancer.
Jefferson and Star are now providing advanced molecular diagnostics/genomics testing and medical consultations to physicians in India. That means that DNA samples from cancer patients in India are sent to Jefferson’s MAL for analysis, to identify any mutations in the cancer genes that can lead to treatments targeted specifically to the genetics of the individual patient’s own tumor.
“For nearly 200 years, Jefferson has been recognized as a national leader in patient care, research and education,” said Stephen K. Klasko, MD, MBA, President of Thomas Jefferson University and President and CEO of TJUH System. “We are pleased to have the opportunity to share our innovations and best practices globally with our international physician colleagues through Star’s network.”
In the first phase of the collaboration, MAL has completed clinical genomic sequencing tests and sent back reports detailing specific cancer gene alterations in a number of individual patient tumors for consideration of personalized treatment options. Moreover, Jefferson oncologists have been providing second opinion consults via telemedicine with India-based physicians.
“This agreement will allow us to develop a broad, strong relationship with Jefferson,” according to Dr. Jamal Naiyer, CEO of Star. “Our mission is to improve the health of communities globally, starting with India. By working together, more people in more places can benefit from the specialty knowledge and expertise that are hallmarks of Jefferson. We are honored and excited to have Jefferson providing services to our growing network of hospitals. This endeavor is a cornerstone of implementing our global mission and vision.”
Jefferson and Star share a common philosophy, commitment and mission to improve the quality and delivery of health care globally. Star established its network to extend the knowledge and expertise of US institutions to international hospitals and healthcare providers that are interested in working together to benefit patients and enhance the delivery of health care at the local level.
The goal of the partnership between Jefferson and the Star group is to be at the forefront of personalized medicine, supporting cancer patients and hospitals worldwide.
Star has partnered with some of the best cancer institutions in India. Now, these institutions and their specialists will be able to consult with Jefferson specialists about complicated cases, as well as access advanced genomic, diagnostic tests.
“This is an important initiative that fulfills the Jefferson Kimmel Cancer Center’s mandate, as a NCI-accredited institution, to collaborate with health care organizations around the world,” said Richard Pestell, MD, PhD, Director of the Jefferson Kimmel Cancer Center. “We are especially energized by the various initiatives that will be part of this collaboration.”