(WIBW) - It's being called an achievement with life-changing impact for people all around the Kansas City region.
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius joined other officials at KU Medical Center Thursday afternoon to announce the University of Kansas Cancer Center earned designation as a National Cancer Institute Cancer Center.
KU's pursuit of the designation began a decade ago. Officials say it's already created more than 1100 jobs and funneled $453 million into the region's economy. It also led to creation of the Midwest Cancer Alliance, linking KU's oncologists and experts with more than a dozen hospitals around the region.
The designation gives KU's Cancer Center and its patients access to cutting edge treatments and clinical trials. KU says it will also help to attract researchers and scientists.
“By prioritizing medical research, we are investing in our future. NCI designation will dramatically enhance KUCC’s ability to discover, develop and deliver innovative treatments to patients in our state and region, and will have a transformative impact on our state’s economy,” Moran said. “I congratulate the teams at KUCC, KU Medical Center, KU Hospital, and other partners for their successful pursuit of this exclusive designation that will have a life-changing impact on Kansans for generations to come – offering hope to thousands of patients."
KU Cancer Center becomes the 67th facility to earn NCI designation and the first in Kansas.