OptumCare Cancer Center

The OptumCare® Cancer Center is a 55,000-square-foot treatment center that provides a new treatment option for local patients. Centrally located at Charleston Blvd. and Rancho Dr., the OptumCare Cancer Center sits at the gateway to the rapidly developing Las Vegas Medical District.

OptumCare Cancer Care continues to enhance its services for Southern Nevada cancer patients with a medical and surgical oncology program and recently-added services that work together to provide patients with another local choice when seeking treatment.

The significance of the Cancer Center goes well beyond bricks and mortar. With a focus on highly coordinated care, a holistic approach, individualized treatment plans and shared decision-making between physicians and patients, the Cancer Center offers an extensive array of cancer treatments and services.

Patients at the center benefit from a wide and increasing range of personalized services offered under one roof, including breast care, chemotherapy, genetic counseling, hematology, imaging, immunotherapy, laboratory services, medical oncology, palliative

care, port placement in the angio suite, consultations for radiation oncology and surgical oncology, and a patient and family resource library. By offering all these services in one location, patients benefit from a continuity of care and a dedicated cancer care team working together to meet their specific needs.

The Cancer Center also features 26 semi-private infusion suites for people undergoing chemotherapy, with plenty of natural light and space for friends and family. The infusion suites were built to maximize comfort and allow patients to connect while undergoing chemotherapy.

Photo: Courtesy of OptumCare Cancer Center

Valley Hospital focuses on training, retention of physicians valley-wide

Since establishing its graduate medical education (GME) program in 2006, 252 physicians have completed their medical training at Valley Hospital through June 2019.

“Our residency programs focus both on the medical training and expertise of physicians and the residents’ introduction to the Southern Nevada medical community,” said Claude Wise, CEO of Valley Hospital. “In a continually growing region like ours, we need to attract and retain as many primary care physicians and specialists as possible. I believe their acceptance rate into various practices and fellowships speaks to the quality of our program through physician leadership, faculty and program design.”

Throughout its history, the Valley Hospital GME program has worked diligently to offer medical experiences and acquire expertise that would help new physicians join local private practices, establish their own businesses, enter fellowships, join a hospitalist group, or continue their training through military service.

That work has continued to pay dividends with an increasing number of physician choosing to work in Southern Nevada. As of June 2018, 60 percent of all graduates remained in the Las Vegas area.

 This includes all five family medicine residents, helping to fulfill the ongoing need for primary care practitioners. Three graduates are continuing their training with fellowships (advanced training) in gastroenterology and pulmonary / critical care at Valley Hospital.

Of the graduates who are leaving Nevada, many are pursuing out-of-state fellowships, including epilepsy and nephrology programs at the University of Southern California.

Additionally, the third class of orthopedic surgery residents maintains its 100 percent fellowship acceptance into spine surgery programs, with graduates heading to Hoag Orthopedic Institute in Irvine, CA, and Oregon Health & Science University in Portland, OR.

Welcoming a New Class
On June 27, 2019, Valley Hospital welcomed a new class of 24 physician residents and four fellows with a traditional White Coat Ceremony. The White Coat Ceremony is considered a rite of passage in the journey toward becoming a physician.  It marks the transition from the study of pre-clinical health sciences to clinical service, and the long white coats of a physician are officially presented.  The long white coat is the symbol of physician clinical service.

Currently, Valley Hospital offers residency programs in Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, Neurology and Orthopedic Surgery, along with Fellowships in Gastroenterology and Pulmonary/Critical Care Medicine.

Photo: Courtesy of Valley Hospital Medical Center – White Coat Ceremony.

UNLV School of Medicine welcomes third class to campus

The UNLV School of Medicine 60-member class of 2023 arrived on campus with impressive credentials, including a 3.7 GPA and 510 MCAT. They come from top universities, including Princeton, Cornell, Vanderbilt, UC Berkeley, UCLA and USC. Twenty-five graduated from UNLV, 13 from UNR, and 1 from Nevada State College.

Orientation day at the Shadow Lane campus included a group breakfast, a white coat fitting, and the opportunity to learn about upcoming curriculum. Following a formal welcome from Dean Barbara Atkinson who formally welcomed them to campus, students enjoyed a surprise visit from Chance, mascot for the Vegas Golden Knights.

Almost all of the students are either from Nevada or have strong ties to the area, making it more likely they will stay and practice here after graduation. Among the 31 males and 29 females, seven are first in their families to graduate from college, three are military veterans, one comes from a family of professional acrobats, and another is 2018 Miss Nevada Alexis Hilts.

All members of the Class of 2023 are scheduled to formally receive their white coats during a ceremony on August 23.

Photo: Courtesy of UNLV School of Medicine – Class of 2023

Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health celebrates 10 years

On Thursday, July 11, Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health celebrated 10 historic years in Nevada with a commemorative time capsule event to recognize the tremendous impact the center has made over the past decade. The event also served as thank you to the Las Vegas community for its unwavering support, while honoring the future of health care and brain disease research.

Nearly 300 patients, caregivers and community leaders gathered at the reception to compose personalized messages that were included in the community time capsule, cementing their hopes for the future of brain disease for years to come. Additional items sealed in the time capsule included:

  • A commemorative coin from Mayor Carolyn Goodman
  • Forward thinking statements from each of the Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health physicians on the future of brain disease research and treatment
  • A plaque from the center’s grand opening celebration in 2009
  • A Team Ruvo t-shirt symbolizing that the future of brain disease will not be a “one size fits all” treatment, complete with signatures of Cleveland Clinic staff and event attendees
  • A congratulatory letter from Touro University Nevada

Following the reception, John Katsilometes, famed entertainment columnist for the Las Vegas Review-Journal, kicked off the program by welcoming former Mayor of Las Vegas and long-time supporter of the Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health, Oscar Goodman, to the stage to discuss the influence that the center has had on Nevada’s health care industry, referencing that, “Las Vegas will be known as the city where the cure took place.”

Continuing the program, Marwan Sabbagh, M.D., director of Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health, showcased the achievements in clinical research and treatment over the past decade and stated, “Since opening our doors in 2009, we have become a leader in neurology –ranked No.4 in U.S. News & World Report’s 2018-19 rankings – and are on the forefront of the research, treatment and education of Alzheimer’s and other brain diseases.”

Other achievements of Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health to date:

  • Conducted more than 165,000 patient appointments 
  • Published 525 scientific papers advancing neurological research
  • Provided 41,000 support service visits to patients and families at no cost
  • Spent 55,000 hours training the next generation of medical professionals

Dr. Sabbagh was then followed by presentations from Jean Georges, caregiver and one of the first volunteers for the center; Tina Dortch, patient at the Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health; and a special message from Camille and Larry Ruvo, thanking the Las Vegas community for its support of their mission during the 10-year journey.

Las Vegas Raiders owner and newlyappointed Keep Memory Alive Board Member Mark Davis spoke about his excitement to be a part of the Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health and the future of world class health care in Las Vegas. He then congratulated both the center and the entire Las Vegas community on this milestone achievement and surprised the crowd with a $25,000 donation to Keep Memory Alive, fundraising arm of the center.

Dr. Sabbagh closed the presentation with forward-thinking objectives for the next 10 years of Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health as well as hopeful achievements in the health care industry. “If the answers to these diseases are going to happen, they’re going to happen here in Las Vegas because of you, because of the support from the community.”

The program concluded with a ceremonial sealing of the time capsule by Dr. Sabbagh, Oscar Goodman, Jean Georges, Tina Dortch and Mark Davis.

Photo: Marwan Sabbagh, M.D., director of Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health, Former Mayor of Las Vegas Oscar Goodman and Las Vegas Raiders owner and newly-appointed Keep Memory Alive Board Member, Mark Davis pose for a photo at the Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health community time capsule event, July 11; photo credit: Chris Andrade with Cashman Photography