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During April 2014 -- Cancer Center Driveway Blocked for Construction

photo of construction at Cancer Center

Photo: Gila Regional Cancer Center front driveway will be blocked due to contruction, however patients and familes can drop off and pick-up at Cancer Center entrance.

Cancer Center Project Update

March 6, 2014 | As of Friday, February 28, the Gila Regional Cancer Center (GRCC) has shut down Radiation Therapy services during the construction and installation of a new cancer treatment machine and will resume in June at the project's completion.

Beginning this week until the first week of April Patient and visitors can expect to see a lot of construction vehicles and construction personnel outside the Surgical Center and Cancer Center. During this construction phase, the drop-off drive way in front of the Centers will be blocked off. Patients and their families can still be dropped-off and picked-up at the entrance doors; they will just not be able to drive through the area.

The Cancer Center's current linear accelerator machine which is more than 20 years old is being replaced with a brand new machine, the Varian Trilogy System. This new system allows radiation oncologists to treat patients with versatile options and pinpoint accuracies resulting in minimal injury to surrounding tissues.

The funding for this project was approved during the 2013 Legislative session; House Bill 580 / Senate Bill 495 presented by Representative Rudy Martinez and Senator Howie Morales. This bill signed into action authorized the New Mexico Finance Authority (NMFA) to issue additional cigarette tax revenue bonds for Gila Regional Medical Center (GRMC) and Nor-Lea General Hospital.

The Cancer Center will still be open for business during this transition. Weekly oncology clinics, chemotherapy and infusion services will continue. "New patient consults and follow-up appointments with both Dr. Douglas Clark and Dr. Govardhanan Nagaiah, New Mexico Cancer Center Hematology-Oncologists, will remain on schedule," according to Mike Torres, GRCC Office Manger. "We will be open during our normal business hours to provide care for our cancer patients during this time period."

Only GRCC patients needing radiation therapy will be referred to other facilities.

Torres stated, "During this time period, Dr. Gregg Franklin and Dr. Amish Shah, New Mexico Cancer Center Radiation Oncologists, will continue to come down to see patients