The Swedish Cancer Institute launches personalized medicine program

April 28, 2014 Swedish News

Richard Sherman, Swedish donors support new program that combines genomic medicine, supportive care

News Release


Contacts: Clay Holtzman, Swedish, 206-386-2748,

SEATTLE — April 28, 2014 — The Swedish Cancer Institute (SCI) today announced its new Personalized Medicine Program that combines advanced medical treatments based on the unique, molecular signature of a patient’s cancer with supportive care that is designed to serve each individual’s physical and emotional health.

“Patients diagnosed with cancer often find themselves having to choose between advanced treatment programs typically associated with academic or research centers, and the patient-centered care they expect from their community hospital,” said SCI Executive Director Thomas Brown, M.D. “The Swedish Cancer Institute has a long history of extraordinary care, and with the addition of genomic medicine, we are continuing our legacy of giving patients the best of both worlds, now through our Personalized Medicine Program.”

Each patient is unique at the cellular level, so understanding the molecular fingerprint of an individual’s cancer helps guide treatment decisions. Combined with the comprehensive social services available to address the complex needs of patients and their families, SCI is striving to provide the most comprehensive, best-practice approach to treating cancer.

To kick-off the Personalized Medicine Program, SCI is launching a public awareness campaign that includes informative content on as well as television spots, the first of which features Seattle Seahawks All-Pro Cornerback Richard Sherman. The video is available for viewing here.

“When I was asked to support the Swedish Cancer Institute’s Personalized Medicine Program, I realized I had a new opportunity to continue my passion for supporting the Seattle community,” said Sherman, who was recently named one of the 2014’s 100 Most Influential People in the World by TIME. “I’m honored to be a part of the innovative work the Swedish Cancer Institute is doing on behalf of patients and families across our region.”

On April 26, hundreds of supporters attended the annual Celebrate Swedish Gala, where donors provided $3.9 million to fund the Personalized Medicine Program; another $700,000 was raised for Swedish charity care. Personalized Medicine funds raised at the Gala will support development of the Robert and Jean Reid Family Innovative Therapeutics & Research Unit at SCI, which was announced last year after a $2 million contribution from the estate of Robert and Jean Reid of Bellevue. This unit will provide state-of-the-art clinical research space for supporting patients who are receiving molecularly targeted therapies. SCI has nine multidisciplinary disease site programs that will make use of this unit: Breast, Gastro-Intestinal, Genitourinary, Gynecologic Oncology, Head & Neck, Hematologic Malignancies, Neurologic Oncology, Sarcoma/Melanoma, and Thoracic.

SCI has cared for more patients than any other Northwest cancer-treatment center, with treatment services offered in seven locations that give patients options close to home. In 2009, Swedish launched its first program to map the gene activity in brain tumors at its Ben & Catherine Ivy Center for Advanced Brain Tumor Treatment. In addition to providing patients access to the latest in approved cancer treatments, Swedish is also one of the largest clinical-trial sites in the Western United States, with more than 700 active trials, including about 200 associated with SCI. This provides patients with access to the latest in treatment options that could provide the ideal approach to fighting their own individual cancers

To learn more about SCI’s Personalized Medicine Program, visit

About Swedish

Founded in 1910, Swedish is the largest non-profit health provider in the Greater Seattle area. It is comprised of five hospital campuses (First Hill, Cherry Hill, Ballard, Edmonds and Issaquah); ambulatory care centers in Redmond and Mill Creek; and Swedish Medical Group, a network of more than 100 primary-care and specialty clinics located throughout the Greater Puget Sound area. In addition to general medical and surgical care including robotic-assisted surgery, Swedish is known as a regional referral center, providing specialized treatment in areas such as cardiovascular care, cancer care, neuroscience, orthopedics, high-risk obstetrics, pediatric specialties, organ transplantation and clinical research. In 2013, Swedish provided nearly $143 million in community benefit in Western Washington. For more information, visit,, or


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