OSF Files to Build $237M Comprehensive Cancer Center in Peoria – Peoria Public Radio

OSF HealthCare is asking the state of Illinois to approve construction of a $237 million regional Comprehensive Cancer Center on its Peoria campus. 

In its application to the Illinois Health Facilities and Services Review Board obtained by WCBU, OSF said it believes the facilty would become the main cancer treatment facility in Illinois between Chicago and St. Louis.

The Comprehensive Cancer Center would bring proton beam therapy to the region. Unlike traditional X-ray radiation therapy, protom beam therapy narrowly targets tumors while leaving nearby healthy tissue unharmed. The targeted approach also allows doctors to release more radiation into the tumor specifically than is possible with traditional radiation. The beam is about the size of a pencil. 

The treatment is currently used to treat a variety of cancers, including those of the brain, breast, head and neck, lung, prostrate, gastrointestinal, gyneological, and many pediatric cancers. It’s considered an non-invasive and painless outpatient procedure. 

Currently, the only proton beam therapy option in Illinois at at Northwestern Medicine Proton Center Chicago, about 130 miles away from Peoria. The next nearest facilities which offer the treatment are in St. Louis and Cincinnati. Only about 30 locations nationwide offer proton beam therapy. 

OSF predicts there’s sufficient demand to treat 275 patients a year within three years’ of the Comprehensive Cancer Center’s opening, and a total of 850 potential cases annually within OSF Saint Francis’ primary service area of Peoria, Tazewell, and Woodford counties; and outlying secondary area encompassing 13 other Central Illinois counties. 

The center would also include brachytherapy, cancer clinics, infusion services, and screening services. 

The OSF Infectious Diseases Building at 723 NE Glen Oak and Allied Agencies Building at 320 N. Armstrong would be demolished to make way for the 180,000 square foot Comprehensive Cancer Center and an accompanying 10-story parking deck with 1,285 spaces.

It would require the relocation of a 60-inch sewer line, an extension of Missouri Avenue, and a tunnel to connect it to the main OSF Saint Francis campus. 

The OSF Foundation is raising money for the Cancer Center.

The state board is set to take up the project at its Feb. 20, 2020 meeting. OSF said the project would be completed within 50 months of approval. 

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