News and Information

CaroMont Cancer Program Receives Top National Distinction


The CaroMont Cancer Center’s commitment to offering its community the best in cancer care has again earned it the Commission on Cancer (CoC) Outstanding Achievement Award (OAA). This announcement came from the American College of Surgeons who has granted its OAA to a select group of currently accredited and newly accredited cancer programs across the United States.

The Commission on Cancer (CoC) of the American College of Surgeons granted its national Outstanding Achievement Award to the CaroMont Cancer Program based on the performance of the program during the three year period 2008 – 2011.

There are just over 1500 total accredited cancer programs in the United States. Approximately 500 programs are surveyed each year.

“Of the cancer programs surveyed within the CaroMont cycle, only 13 programs have received the national “Outstanding Achievement Award” for three consecutive surveys (period of 9 straight years),” said Rick Varterasian, Director CaroMont Oncology Services. That represents 2.0 percent of the accredited U.S. programs. The CaroMont Cancer Program on a national level with the Commission on Cancer is in rare company.”

How are Cancer Centers accredited?

Established in 2004, the CoC Outstanding Achievement Award recognizes cancer programs that strive for excellence in providing quality care to cancer patients. The award is granted to facilities that demonstrate a commendation level of compliance with seven standards that represent six areas of cancer program activity: 1) cancer committee leadership; 2) cancer data management; 3) clinical management; 4) research; 5) community outreach; and 6) quality improvement. The level of compliance with these standards is determined during an onsite evaluation by a physician surveyor performed every three years. In addition, facilities must receive a compliance rating for the remaining 29 cancer program standards.

About Accreditation

Receiving CoC Accreditation means a hospital or cancer treatment facility puts quality patient care at the forefront. The extensive team of board certified physicians and specially trained nurses follow a multidisciplinary care model that ensures patients receive care across the continuum—from diagnosis to treatment to support groups—so patients never have to face cancer alone. Approximately 80 percent of all newly diagnosed cancer patients are being treated in CoC-accredited cancer programs.

Like the CoC national recognition, the Cancer Center also celebrated its recent distinction as the only radiation oncology program in the region accredited by the American College of Radiology. And, the reveal of its latest technology, the TrueBeam™ linear accelerator which combines precision and speed to yield positive outcomes, bolsters its cancer program even more.

In August 2012, CaroMont Cancer will be opening a new Cancer Center in Lincoln County.

How can the CaroMont Cancer Center be so optimistic about cancer—one of the most dire challenges any person face? Because, it rests assured on its benchmarks of excellence. No one wants to learn that they have cancer. It’s gutsy for anyone with cancer to even talk about tomorrow, but if there’s ever a time to be bold and make plans for the future, it’s now.

For more information about the CaroMont Cancer Center, call today at 704-834-3551.


Rick Vartarasian – Director, Oncology Service Line Director

Margie Owenby – Oncology Program Coordinator

Kathleen Besson – VP, Clinical Integration

Dr. Michael Gaslin – Chair, Cancer Committee & Oncology Quality Council

Randy Kelley, President and CEO

Robin Smith – Oncology Clinical Manager

Dr. Robert Doline – Cancer Liaison Physician

About CaroMont Health

A nationally honored health provider, CaroMont Health is promoting a more vibrant community through individual health care. CaroMont offers a network of top resources across five counties, all centered on a state-of-the-art, 435-bed hospital that is ranked among the best in the nation. It is a spectrum of health services that is just the right size to deliver high-quality, individualized care that has been recognized by the following experts:

  • CareChex rating service: First in the nation for medical excellence for overall care
  • Region’s only Hospital to receive North Carolina’s Award for Performance Excellence (Baldrige)
  • Joint Commission: Top Performer on Key Quality Measures for heart attack, heart failure, pneumonia and surgical care.
  • A 2011 Top Performing Hospital for providing high quality, efficient care as a part of the Premier healthcare alliance QUEST program.
  • Healthgrade Distinguished Hospital Award for Clinical Excellence™ three years in a row, 2010, 2011 and 2012.

CaroMont Health is located at 2525 Court Drive in Gastonia, N.C., and can be reached at (704) 834-2000. Additional information is available at .