UF Health Shands Hospital
UF Health Shands Cancer Hospital

Our Cancer Center Showcase series continues this month with UF Health Shands Hospital located in Gainesville, FL. UF Health is home to three not-for-profit hospital systems – UF Health Shands, UF Health Jacksonville and UF Health Central Florida – and includes 10 hospitals. It is part of one of the nation’s top 5 public research universities.

UF Health is the Southeast’s most comprehensive academic health center encompassing hospitals, physician practices, colleges, centers, institutes, programs, and services across Northeast and North Central Florida.

According to the U.S. News & World Report 2021-22 Best Hospitals survey, UF Health Shands Hospital in Gainesville, FL is nationally ranked in 6 adult specialties and 8 pediatric specialties and rated high performing in 5 adult specialties and 12 procedures and conditions.

The Cancer Registry at UF Health Shands started in 1959 and is currently led by Marcia Hodge, ODS-C, Director of Registry Operations. Marcia is assisted by eleven staff members including one supervisor, seven abstractors, two follow-up personnel and one Cancer Conference/Survivorship Care Plan Coordinator. All staff work remotely, with the follow-up staff and the supervisor coming on site once each month. The staff accessions approximately 3,800 cases annually, not including the reportable by agreement cases.

UF Health Shands has been CoC accredited since 1984. They were awarded the NAPBC accreditation in 2010, with their NAPRC application for accreditation pending. The cancer program participates in nine different tumor boards each month. The registry staff maintains all documentation for each tumor board and reports tumor board status to the Cancer Committee.

Marcia states that the cancer registry data is utilized throughout the health system, with frequent data requests from staff physicians, administration, and the Clinical Trials department. In addition, the data is used for research, communications, grant applications, and to support staffing for other departments. The registry also partners and provides information to the Patient Navigation and Community Outreach departments.

The UF Health Shands registry has used CRStar to automate their casefinding and follow-up procedures. Marcia states that these processes have greatly reduced the need for manual casefinding, and they now spend only a small percentage of their time on these processes. In addition, it has significantly reduced the amount of time required to manually review the EMR for follow-up information. Marcia looks forward to continued progress in the area of automation and looks forward to the future where she anticipates pulling more data into the patient abstract.

When asked what impact the longevity of her CoC accreditation status has had on the health system, Marcia states, “It shows long term dedication and commitment by our physicians, administration, and the cancer registry, all working together to ensure CoC standards are met. It is a tool which can be utilized to gauge certain processes and potentially look for opportunities for improvement.”