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St. Elizabeth Cancer Center Named a 2023 ACCC Innovator Award Winner by The Association of Community Cancer Centers

Written by Sarah Shelson
Rockville, MD – The Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC) announced today that St. Elizabeth Cancer Center in Edgewood, Kentucky, is a recipient of a 2023 ACCC Innovator Award.

St. Elizabeth Cancer Center won the award for the development of a care delivery model that demonstrates sustainable outreach for cancer screening, with a specific focus on at-risk and underserved patient populations.

The model is a result of the healthcare system’s multi-year effort to develop a program for outreach to patients with outstanding orders for lung, breast, and colon cancer screenings. Following a financial analysis of both the associated costs and the reimbursement for these preventative services, the cancer program found it had achieved a positive net return on its investment, allowing for an expansion of the St. Elizabeth Cancer Center’s Population Health Support Services team that conducts outreach to patients within the community.

“Our program has grown exponentially since we started our program back in 2013. It's through a team-based effort that has demonstrated the value of lung cancer screening—certainly for our patients and for our community, but also for our healthcare system,” said Michael Gieske, MD, Medical Director of Lung Cancer Screening at St. Elizabeth Health Care.

Dr. Gieske and Jamie Ries, RN, BSN, Manager of Population Health Support Services at St. Elizabeth Cancer Center, will speak about the success of the program and how it has improved health equity in the healthcare system’s region at the ACCC 40th National Oncology Conference in Austin, Texas. Learn more about this program in a deep dive with Dr. Gieske on the CANCER BUZZ podcast.


For 13 years the ACCC Innovator Awards have honored forward-thinking ACCC Member Programs that have developed and implemented creative and cost-effective solutions to deliver person-centered care. ACCC has recognized six winners in 2023, including St. Elizabeth Cancer Center, for programs that range from embedding counseling services in oncology care to developing the country’s first advanced practice radiation therapist role.

ACCC Innovator Award winners demonstrate the ability to advance the goals of improving access, quality, and value in cancer care delivery, while also providing replicable solutions for other cancer programs and practices.

The Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC) is the leading education and advocacy organization for the cancer care community. Founded in 1974, ACCC is a powerful network of 32,000 multidisciplinary practitioners from 1,700 hospitals and practices nationwide. As advances in cancer screening and diagnosis, treatment options, and care delivery models continue to evolve—so has ACCC—adapting its resources to meet the changing needs of the entire oncology care team. For more information, visit accc-cancer.org. Follow us on social media; read our blog, ACCCBuzz; tune in to our CANCER BUZZ podcast; and view our CANCER BUZZ TV channel.