Carolinas HealthCare System’s Levine Cancer Institute has earned a Planetree Designation, a hallmark of exceptional patient-centered care. The Planetree Designation is a key award that recognizes excellence in person-centeredness across the continuum of care and is based on evidence and standards within the health-care industry. The criteria that an organization must satisfy to achieve this designation reflect what patients, family members, and health-care professionals believe matters most to them during a health-care experience, including quality and clinical outcomes. There are only 31 health-care providers in the United States and 81 worldwide that have earned Planetree Designation.
The designation signals that Levine Cancer Institute is an organization where patient comfort, dignity, empowerment, and well-being are prioritized with providing top-quality care.— Susan Frampton, PhD
“The designation signals to patients, providers, and everyone with an investment in cancer care that Levine Cancer Institute is an organization where providers partner with patients and families and where patient comfort, dignity, empowerment, and well-being are prioritized with providing top-quality clinical care,” said Susan Frampton, PhD, President of Planetree.
“Patient-centered care is about providers taking a step back and realizing that we’re experts in cancer care and treatment, but patients are experts in their lives and needs, and it’s this recognition that is at the center of everything we do,” said Derek Raghavan, MD, PhD, President of the Levine Cancer Institute. “By combining the leading-edge oncology treatments, nationally renowned physicians, careful cancer research, and demonstrated clinical outcomes with a truly patient-centered care approach, we have built a network that allows our Institute to provide tremendous clinical care for patients. This extends far beyond the traditional definition of care and demonstrates what is possible when all aspects of treatment are truly integrated. Carolinas HealthCare System has its own internal system of evaluating patient centric care, but this external validation for our cancer institute program will be crucial for the welfare of our patients and families.”
We’re experts in cancer care and treatment, but patients are experts in their lives and needs, and it’s this recognition that is at the center of everything we do.— Derek Raghavan, MD, PhD
Planetree Evaluation Criteria
To achieve designation, Levine Cancer Institute has undergone rigorous site visits by a team of Planetree representatives, which included focus groups with recent Levine Cancer Institute patients, families, and current staff validating that specific patient-centered policies are in place. The process also included a review of the organization’s performance on patient satisfaction and quality of care measures, and how measurement of these indicators improved organizational outcomes.
More than 50 specific criteria address components of a patient-centered health-care experience, including patient-provider interactions; access to information; family involvement; the physical environment; food and nutrition; spirituality; arts and entertainment; and integrative therapies. In addition, the criteria focus on how the organization is supporting its staff; opportunities for staff, patients, and families to have a voice in the way care is delivered; and the ways that the organization is reaching beyond its walls to care for its community.
Levine Cancer Institute’s cancer care delivery model and focus on population health give patients increased access to care while improving overall quality of life. The Institute has established standardized clinical pathways treatment guidelines that ensure treatment is consistent for all patients. Advanced technology enables physicians at more than 25 locations to collaborate and share best practices.
Planetree is an international nonprofit organization that has been at the forefront of the movement to transform health-care from the perspective of the patient for nearly 40 years. ■