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For Immediate Release

For more information, contact:
Gloria O'Connell, 612-863-4801


Virginia Piper Cancer Institute - Abbott Northwestern receives American College of Radiology accreditation for radiation oncology

MINNEAPOLIS 03/22/2013--The Virginia Piper Cancer Institute – Abbott Northwestern Hospital, part of Allina Health, has been awarded a three-year term of accreditation in radiation oncology as the result of a recent review by the American College of Radiology.

To make an appointment at the Radiation Oncology Center, call 612-863-4060.

"We are proud of this achievement, and we want the public to know that the safest and highest quality radiation therapy possible is available here," said Timothy Sielaff, MD, PhD, president, Virginia Piper Cancer Institute.

About 600 patients are treated each year in the Radiation Oncology Center at Abbott Northwestern. The center’s radiation oncologists: David Monyak, MD, Patsa Sullivan, MD, and Laura Willson, MD, practice exclusively at Abbott Northwestern.

Radiation oncology is the careful use of high-energy radiation to treat cancer. A radiation oncologist may use radiation to cure cancer or to relieve a cancer patient’s pain. At Abbott Northwestern, patients have access to stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS); stereotactic fractionated radiosurgery (SRT); stereotactic ablative radiotherapy (SABR); 3D volume base planning high dose rate brachytherapy (HDR); image guided radiation therapy (IGRT); CT simulation; respiratory gating; volumetric arc therapy (VMAT), and two Varian Trilogy linear accelerators.

The ACR is the nation’s oldest and most widely accepted radiation oncology accrediting body, with nearly 500 accredited sites, and 25 years of accreditation experience. The ACR seal of accreditation represents the highest level of quality and patient safety.

It is awarded only to facilities meeting specific practice guidelines and technical standards developed by ACR after a peer-review evaluation by board-certified radiation oncologists and medical physicists who are experts in the field. Patient care and treatment, patient safety, personnel qualifications, adequacy of facility equipment, quality control procedures, and quality assurance programs are assessed. The findings are reported to the ACR Committee on Radiation Oncology Accreditation, which subsequently provides the practice with a comprehensive report they can use for continuous practice improvement.

About Virginia Piper Cancer Institute

The Virginia Piper Cancer Institute provides comprehensive care through all aspects of cancer prevention, early detection and treatment to help individuals maintain quality of life and find ways to live with and beyond cancer. The Institute was founded in 1990 at Abbott Northwestern Hospital. Clinical experts and experienced caregivers provide oncology care and services across the Allina Health system, and offer expert support to various affiliate locations.

About Allina Health

Allina Health is dedicated to the prevention and treatment of illness and enhancing the greater health of individuals, families and communities throughout Minnesota and western Wisconsin.

A not-for-profit health care system, Allina Health cares for patients from beginning to end-of-life through its 90+ clinics, 11 hospitals, 15 pharmacies, specialty care centers and specialty medical services that provide hospice care, oxygen and home medical equipment, and emergency medical transportation services. Learn more at

About the American College of Radiology

The ACR is a national professional organization serving more than 36,000 diagnostic/interventional radiologists, radiation oncologists, nuclear medicine physicians and medical physicists with programs focusing on the practice of medical imaging and radiation oncology and the delivery of comprehensive health care services.

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