Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Bayfront Medical Center to end some cancer therapies, open hospice

ST. PETERSBURG — In the latest sign of the region's changing health care landscape, Bayfront Medical Center is moving away from providing some cancer services and into hospice care.

The St. Petersburg hospital told employees this week it was ceasing its outpatient radiation and chemotherapy programs. Hospital leaders made the decision in light of the trend to offer these services through private doctors' offices, according to Bayfront spokeswoman Kim Simers.

The hospital will continue to treat the seven patients currently receiving the therapies there, but won't accept new patients. The programs were losing money, Simers said.

Bayfront will continue to provide other cancer services, including inpatient chemotherapy, gamma knife therapy and infusion therapy. And it remains committed to offering inpatient medical and surgical cancer care.

"Those services are as strong as ever and have not been diminished in any way," Simers said. "What this enables us to do is to focus our time and attention on other health care needs."

That includes opening a 12-bed hospice unit at Bayfront in partnership with Suncoast Hospice to serve terminally ill hospital patients who would prefer to be in a more home-like setting.

The unit will be the first of its kind in Pinellas County, Simers said, offering patients too fragile for discharge hospice's palliative care, but with a more comfortable setting than a traditional hospital room. Renovations are under way for the program, scheduled to open at the end of this year or early in 2012.

Bayfront is also expanding its hospital-owned physician practices in cardiology, orthopedics and primary care.

About a half dozen employees are affected by the closing of the cancer programs, Simers said. Officials hope to place most into vacant positions at Bayfront.

Letitia Stein can be reached at or (727) 893-8330. For more health news, visit

Bayfront Medical Center to end some cancer therapies, open hospice 10/28/11 [Last modified: Friday, October 28, 2011 7:49pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Senate Obamacare effort dies; Rubio in favor of repeal, Nelson against


    WASHINGTON - The Senate Republican effort to Obamacare failed early Friday, with John McCain providing a decisive vote.

    The Senate vote
  2. Senate ponders health care bill it doesn't want to be law


    Buoyed by a signal from House Speaker Paul Ryan, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell introduced a pared-down health care bill late Thursday that he hoped would keep alive Republican ambitions to repeal Obamacare.

    Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., left, and Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., expressed concerns about passing the “skinny repeal” of Obamacare without assurances of further negotiations.
  3. Arrest made in shooting death of 19-year-old found in lot


    A 20-year-old Tampa man was arrested Thursday night for the shooting death of a 19-year-old whose body was discovered in a vacant lot on Tuesday.

  4. Rays fall to Yankees in 11 on Brett Gardner homer (w/ video)

    The Heater

    NEW YORK — The front office did its part Thursday, making two trades to bolster the roster in a push for the playoffs. But the Rays didn't follow up in a frustrating 6-5 11-inning loss to the Yankees.

    Rays reliever Andrew Kittredge stands on the mound and can only watch as the Yankees’ Brett Gardner starts to circle the bases after his walkoff home run leading off the 11th inning.
  5. Believe it! Rays are buyers, trade for reliever Dan Jennings and 1B/DH Lucas Duda

    The Heater

    NEW YORK — Dan Jennings' ability to render lefty hitters useless with a sinker that gets beaten into the ground and Lucas Duda's power to blast baseballs off and over outfield walls should make the Rays better.

    Lucas Duda