New Wellmont Cancer Institute Facility In Johnson City Maximizes Comfort, Promotes Healing For Patients

Ribbon CuttingJOHNSON CITY – Soothing colors, gorgeous photos and abundant natural light will enhance the healing experience for patients as the Wellmont Cancer Institute reinforces its high quality of care in its newest facility

The cancer institute is moving its Johnson City physician office and infusion service to 378 Marketplace Blvd., Suite 10. Scheduled to open March 24, the new facility is located next to Wellmont Urgent Care and Northern Tool behind Fuddruckers and continues the superior care the cancer institute has delivered in the community.

Patients diagnosed with all types of cancer and other blood disorders have been seen by medical oncologists from Wellmont Medical Associates Oncology & Hematology and received infusion since January 2013 at 302 Wesley St., Suite 3. This was a temporary home that enabled the cancer institute to treat patients in Johnson City as it prepared to move to a permanent location.

“We are grateful for the tremendous reception we have received to our services and are confident patients will be even more comfortable during their care at our new facility,” said Sue Lindenbusch, the cancer institute’s senior vice president. “We have added many touches in our new building’s layout that will give patients greater strength and hope. At the same time, the compassion of our highly skilled oncologists and other remarkable staff will remain unchanged.”

The cancer institute celebrated the upcoming opening with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and tours Wednesday, March 5. Attendees saw six exams rooms, eight infusion bays, the nurse’s station, multiple work areas for clinicians and staff and other amenities.

Among the services available to patients will be chemotherapy, hydrations and injections.

Lindenbusch said peaceful surroundings in the new facility, which will include paintings by Science Hill High School students, were designed with patients’ comfort in mind.

In addition to increased natural light, photos and artwork, the new location will feature infusion chairs that provide the comfort patients need while offering heat and massage capabilities that benefit them greatly. Lindenbusch said the chairs help preserve skin integrity, which can be an issue for cancer patients.

Patients will have ease of access, with parking right outside the front door.

“Cancer is a life-changing illness that affects each patient and family differently, and our goal is to meet their needs in all respects,” Lindenbusch said. “It’s part of our holistic approach to treatment that empowers our patients to heal in body, mind and spirit. We spent a great deal of time thinking about the best way to assist our patients from the moment they entered this facility to the moment they left.”

The primary health professionals at the new location are Drs. Jamal Maatouk and Fadi Abu-Shahin, who are both medical doctors with Wellmont Medical Associates Oncology & Hematology, and nurse practitioner Myra Blankenship. Dr. Paul Kramer, a medical doctor and a gynecologic oncologist with Wellmont Medical Associates Women’s Cancer Services, will see patients there once a week.

Patients will also be able to connect to varied other caregivers, including social workers, dieticians, the only licensed genetic counselor in Northeast Tennessee, clinical trials personnel and oncology nurse navigators.

“We are blessed to have such a beautiful new building and provide multiple services to our patients,” Dr. Maatouk said. “Receiving a cancer diagnosis is a major moment in patients’ lives, and we’re grateful to be there for them in a facility that enables them to focus on healing and looking toward a future of promise. All of us are committed to helping them achieve that milestone.”

The cancer institute has also incorporated into the facility a small retail store, called the Wishing Well Shoppe, which will help patients with the side effects of cancer and lift their spirits. Among the broad spectrum of items patients can select are skin and mouth products, clothes and jewelry.

This relocation consolidates the cancer’s institute’s Johnson City services, which also include the Wellmont Breast Center, on the Wellmont Outpatient Campus. The breast center, which provides mammograms, opened in 2012 at 316 Marketplace Blvd., and will continue to provide this screening test there.

Other care available at the outpatient center is the Wellmont Medical Associates family medicine practices of Drs. Bob Connell and Rita Plemmons and the Wellmont Medical Associates Pulmonology & Sleep practice of Dr. Mark Emery. All of these physicians are medical doctors and located in the same building as the breast center.

On the other side of State of Franklin Road, located at 2124 Knob Creek Road, are the Wellmont CVA Heart Institute and the Wellmont Medical Associates Women’s Health practice of Dr. Peter Earl, an obstetrician and gynecologist who is also a medical doctor.

“It’s been our privilege to provide these services to our patients close to their home or work in Johnson City,” said Denny DeNarvaez, Wellmont Health System’s president and CEO. “We have been pleased to bring services to the community at the request of people who want a choice in providers. Wellmont appreciates their support and is thankful for the opportunity to have innovative care and medical professionals who are making a positive difference in people’s lives."