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Introducing the New Hunt Cancer Center

Introducing the New Hunt Cancer Center

The Hunt Cancer Center opened for patient care on December 16, 2020, and will bring together the oncology expertise of Torrance Memorial and its partner, Cedars-Sinai, as well as community specialists. “This will give us a very comprehensive oncology team on-site,” says Heidi Assigal, vice president of business and operations for Torrance Memorial Health System.

The center will consolidate Torrance Memorial’s existing cancer treatment services to one location, including its nurse navigators, genetic counseling services, clinical research trials to be conducted in partnership with Cedars-Sinai, and infusion and chemotherapy. It will also relocate the Torrance Memorial Physician Network – Cancer Care medical group from its Redondo Beach office to the medical center’s main campus.

Team members will include nurse navigators, who serve as care coordinators, patient advocates and personalized schedules for patients through all aspects of care. “They really help patients and families to know what the next steps are,” Assigal says. “The idea is to take the logistic and administrative hurdles away from patients and their loved ones.”

At the same time, there will be on-site genetic counseling with additional medical expertise coming from Cedars-Sinai, she says. The new partnership also will expand access to promising new treatments, as the oncology team strives to bring as many clinical trials to the South Bay as possible. And the multidisciplinary approach to care, in which Torrance Memorial’s tumor board develops a personalized treatment plan for each patient, will be enhanced by new subspecialists.

Planners also have paid significant attention to the patient environment, focusing on both comfort and monitored care, Assigal says. Because patients often bring family members along to hear a diagnosis or post-treatment evaluation, exam rooms will have extra space for them. And waiting and treatment areas will feature soothing colors and art of nature, along with plenty of window space and natural light. Infusion centers, where patients are given chemotherapy, will offer snacks, warming blankets and personal entertainment consoles.

Those receiving chemotherapy will be housed in care clusters, with each nurse caring for four patients. “Patients will have more of a personal zone,” Assigal says, “yet nurses will be just a couple of steps away for easy monitoring.”

Overall, she says, “The whole center is designed around convenience for the patients, starting with being able to park on-site, take the elevator right up and sit in comfortable, beautiful waiting rooms before being seen.”