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HHC and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center expand partnership to advance cancer care

June 14, 2024

Hartford HealthCare and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK) today announced they are working toward a greatly expanded relationship to elevate and transform cancer care and research throughout Connecticut, with a new Hartford HealthCare Cancer Center under construction in Fairfield.

Building off their groundbreaking 10-year collaboration in which the Hartford HealthCare Cancer Institute became the first member of the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Alliance, Hartford HealthCare will now work with MSK to become the first Care Partner of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK Care Partners).

MSK announced the new MSK Care Partners program at Hartford HealthCare’s state-of-the-art 25,000-square-foot facility now under construction at 4185 Black Rock Turnpike near the Merritt Parkway in Fairfield. Upon completion of a successful intensive review of its oncology program’s processes and outcomes, the new Fairfield Cancer Center, St. Vincent’s Medical Center, and Hartford HealthCare Cancer Institute locations would become MSK Care Partners.

The Fairfield Cancer Center will provide outpatient cancer services with expert Hartford HealthCare physicians on-site. Work is already underway to meet MSK’s rigorous standards.

“Hartford HealthCare’s ambition is to be the best at getting better, and we work with the world’s best partners to make world-class healthcare more affordable, accessible, and equitable for all,” said Jeffrey A. Flaks, Hartford HealthCare President and Chief Executive Officer. “We are proud to deepen our collaboration with MSK’s world renowned experts to elevate cancer care and to work to earn designation as an MSK Care Partner. This is a transformative moment for cancer care in Connecticut as we work together to provide greater access to cutting-edge treatments and innovative clinical research.”

Hartford HealthCare also plans to create a new dedicated cancer unit at St. Vincent’s Medical Center in Bridgeport, providing comprehensive inpatient oncology care in a space designed for optimal care and patient experience.

Partnership for world class cancer care

MSK Care Partners are healthcare organizations that have committed to working with MSK toward ensuring that more patients in community settings have access to subspecialized, high-quality cancer care. Through knowledge-sharing, broader access to clinical trials, expanded educational opportunities, and collaboration with the world’s preeminent cancer specialists, healthcare organizations integrate MSK Standards of Care™ into their oncology practice.

Organizations that become MSK Care Partners commit to continually improving the quality of its oncology services based on MSK Standards of Care™. Recurring quality reviews will support the adoption of the newest and most effective approaches to cancer care in their community based on scientific evidence.

Upon completion of the intensive review, Hartford HealthCare patients would have access to higher quality cancer care, incorporating MSK’s world-class guidelines, practices, and procedures while in the care of Hartford HealthCare physicians.

Address health equity in communities

“Ensuring health equity is one of the greatest challenges in health care today, and we are better when we work together to address this challenge. That’s why we’re excited to launch MSK Care Partners to collaborate with hospitals across the country, bringing our high-quality cancer care to more people and improving cancer outcomes,” said Selwyn M. Vickers, MD, FACS, President and CEO of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. “We’re honored to begin the MSK Care Partner journey with Hartford HealthCare, who has been an exceptional MSK Cancer Alliance partner and whose quality and safety is nationally recognized. Over the past decade, we have built a great relationship with Hartford HealthCare and we have a shared goal to bring the very best cancer care to Connecticut.”

This relationship fosters the rapid adoption of the latest and most effective standards of cancer care in the community setting. It will also expand access to MSK’s cutting-edge research programs, including clinical trials.

Through the MSK Care Partner relationship, Hartford HealthCare physicians will have access to MSK’s expertise and the opportunity to collaborate and interact with MSK physicians in several ways. Physicians will consult with MSK’s highly specialized experts on the optimal treatment plan for their patients. They also will observe MSK physicians performing new techniques, better equipping them to provide the highest standard of care in their own practices.

MSK and Hartford HealthCare will also work to collect and track data on quality, outcomes, and patient experience. By learning from each other, the organizations will be able to create even better outcomes for patients.