UT Med Center getting new cancer institute

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- The University of Tennessee Medical Center will break ground this year on a new cancer institute.

Construction is expected to begin mid-year. The new facility will be at least 100,000 square feet with an estimated price tag in the $20-$25 million range.

Dr. John Bell, director of the institute, said it will be the largest and most comprehensive facility in the region dedicated exclusively to cancer care.

The existing facility has been used since 2003; officials said their treatment services have doubled since then.

In 2010, the institute had more than 2,000 new cancer diagnoses, an 11 percent increase.

The medical center, which has 581 beds, is a referral point for East Tennessee, southeast Kentucky and western North Carolina.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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