The Augusta Planning Board has approved the proposed $36 million for MaineGeneral health project to expand the Harold Alfond Center for Cancer Care. This expansion comes in response to the growing demand for specialized cancer care services provided by the facility. MaineGeneral Health’s outgoing President and CEO, Chuck Hays, revealed that the clinic currently serves over 2,000 new patients annually. This figure is more than double the capacity initially envisioned when the center was established in 2007.
Andy Johnston of Atlantic Resource Consultants highlighted the MaineGeneral Health’s center significant contributions in providing cancer treatment to the region over the past 15 years. He noted that the current facility, while attractive and functional. And has been stretched beyond its limits due to the increasing need for therapy services.
The expansion project entails two additional wings, adding nearly 28,000 square feet of floor space to the existing 57,000 square feet. Furthermore, approximately 18,000 square feet of the current area will undergo renovations. Construction will commence upon receiving approval for an amendment to MaineGeneral’s permit from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection.
Addressing growing Oncology Needs with Expanded MaineGeneral Cancer Center
With the expansion, the center will be able to accommodate a total of 27 assessment rooms. Along with an increase in the number of infusion bays, from 34 to 44. The MaineGeneral’s cancer center hospital administrators attribute the surge in demand for oncology services to several factors. Firstly, there has been a rise in cancer incidences in Maine due to the aging population. Secondly, advancements in screening methods have led to earlier cancer diagnoses. Lastly, improvements in treatment options have resulted in longer lifespans for cancer patients, necessitating ongoing care. The center’s clinical partnerships with Redington-Fairview General Hospital in Skowhegan. And Franklin Memorial Hospital in Farmington have also contributed to a higher number of patients from rural areas seeking their services.
The funding for the expansion will be primarily sourced from $30 million in fundraising efforts, of which $28 million has already been secured. Additionally, $6 million will come from MaineGeneral’s cancer center cash operating revenues.