Q&A with Terri Kramolis, Northwest Wisconsin Cancer Center Manager

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What does a cancer center manager do?

A cancer center manager has an understanding of all the services that are being delivered in the cancer center and assists to have all of those services working in a coordinated manner. Some days this requires putting out fires within the department and other days attending meetings, reviewing policies, coordinating education for staff and reviewing and monitoring reports and work completed in the center. Staffing in a cancer center includes physicians, nursing staff, radiation therapists, physicists and dosimetrists along with certified medical assistants. These professionals work in partnership with pharmacy, dieticians, social workers, and chaplain. Coordinating that all of these people are working together, making sure that there is coverage, assisting to develop processes and coordinated communication within our system and with partner and referring agencies. And the most important job is assuring that I am doing everything possible to make the patient experience the best it can be.

How will the Northwest Wisconsin Cancer Center impact our region?
The NWCC will have a significant impact on our region because it offers the option for people who live here or near here to receive the whole complement of cancer services under one roof and in their hometown. The previous options for anyone living in Northern Wisconsin was a significant drive no matter where they chose to receive treatment.

As a cancer survivor, what is the one piece of advice you’d give to others?
As a cancer survivor and a nurse I would say to anyone, get your recommended screenings. Routine screenings can help to find cancer early. Finding cancer early gives the oncologist and your care provider team so many more options to treat and beat cancer. I know it made a huge difference in my treatment plan and my options.

What are you most excited about regarding the opening of the NWCC?
I am most proud of being a part of this cancer center, being able to be in at the ground floor of the opening and the introduction of it to the community. I can’t say enough about the advantages of receiving treatment locally because no matter what type of cancer someone is diagnosed with….it is a fight. Treatment is draining. And decreasing the need for long driving time, decreasing the stress of navigating a unfamiliar city helps that patient channel their energy towards healing. Also, receiving care from people you know who live in your community is a great advantage!