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Kollmorgen Leads Cancer Center to Special Commendation

Daniel Kollmorgen, M.D., a Surgical Oncologist with The Iowa Clinic, has been on a mission to individualize patient care plans across multiple specialties at the John Stoddard Cancer Center. The result is recognized by the Commission on Cancer (CoC) and the American College of Surgeons (ACoS).


Your Local Health | Written by BJ Towe

Daniel Kollmorgen, M.D., a Surgical Oncologist with The Iowa Clinic, has been on a mission to individualize patient care plans across multiple specialties at the John Stoddard Cancer Center. The result is recognized by the Commission on Cancer (CoC) and the American College of Surgeons (ACoS).

In his role as Medical Director for the John Stoddard Cancer Center, Daniel Kollmorgen, M.D., focuses on improving patient care and increasing physician accountability. His leadership, combined with the efforts of multiple physicians and staff, recently culminated in the CoC and the ACoS granting John Stoddard Cancer Center a Three-Year Accreditation with Gold Level Commendation, the highest level awarded.

“Cancer care is increasingly complex and requires a committed and well-organized team,” says Kollmorgen. “Instead of regarding radiation, chemotherapy, and other aspects of cancer care as islands, we have taken steps to ensure that we treat the whole patient. Care is a team plan from the get-go.”

This team plan is carried out at John Stoddard Cancer Center by seven different tumor boards, each comprised of multiple specialists, from Social Workers and Genetic Counselors to Dietitians and Oncologists. Each complex cancer case is reviewed by a board, which develops a care plan specific to the
patient's needs.

To receive the Accreditation, John Stoddard Cancer Center was evaluated on 34 CoC quality care standards. Ten of those relate to delivering comprehensive patient care and qualify for extra commendation. “We scored 10 out of 10, which led to the additional Gold Level Commendation,” Kollmorgen says.

Kollmorgen is quick to note that this accomplishment reflects the work of many physicians and staff. “The effort to improve care provided by the John Stoddard Cancer Center is a direct result of the work being done by the surgical specialists at The Iowa Clinic, including General Surgeons, Colorectal Surgeons, Plastic Surgeons, and more. These are the physicians who are delivering the high, national level of cancer surgical care.”

Advancing Medical Care Through Research

Patients help The Iowa Clinic study and assess the effectiveness and safety of new medications. At any point in time, The Iowa Clinic is participating in approximately a dozen different clinical trials. The ultimate goal? To deliver better, safer treatment options to patients by keeping physicians on the leading-edge of medicine.

Grant Paulsen, M.D., Director of The Iowa Clinic Research Department, says, “Since 1997, when The Iowa Clinic began conducting clinical trials, we have had success stories in virtually every area of every medical discipline. Patients learn so much, take on a more active role in their care, and can improve their health. For example, we've had blood cholesterol studies where a particular medication cut participants' lipid numbers in half.”

Participating in clinical research allows patients to gain access to new medications, devices, and treatments before they are widely available. Paulsen says, “Doctors get to be part of bringing hopefully better and safer treatment options to the patients who need them.”

But participation isn't automatic. Interested patients are first assessed by the research team to ensure that they meet stringent eligibility criteria, which may range from age and gender to having had certain illnesses in the past. As part of the mandatory Informed Consent process, eligible patients then receive comprehensive information about the study to help them decide whether or not they want to take part.

To learn more about medical research, enrolling studies, trial sponsors, and the Informed Consent process, visit The Iowa Clinic Research Department or call (515) 875-9815.

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