Ironwood building new cancer and research facility in Gilbert - East Valley Tribune: Business

Ironwood building new cancer and research facility in Gilbert

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Posted: Friday, March 2, 2012 9:37 am | Updated: 10:28 am, Sat Mar 3, 2012.

A cancer treatment and research center will expand its presence in the East Valley by constructing a new clinic in Gilbert.

Ironwood Cancer & Research Centers will build a 25,000-square-foot facility near the Loop 202 Santan Freeway and Val Vista Drive, close to a smaller existing office. The Gilbert office is now Ironwood’s smallest location but the new clinic will be the same size as the offices in Chandler and Mesa, said Melissa Veselovsky, Ironwood’s patient advocacy director.

“We’ll be able to accommodate more patients,” Veselovsky said.

The new facility also allows Ironwood to expand clinical trials in Gilbert, and to add surgical urology and gynecologic oncology.

Ironwood expects to begin construction in three months to six months. It will take up to 16 months to complete the two-story building in the 3600 block of South Rome Street.

Ironwood expects the Gilbert facility will draw patients from across the Valley in part because of its freeway access, Veselovsky said. Ironwood is one of Arizona’s largest oncology groups in Arizona. It is a division of Ironwood Physicians, PC.

Gilbert Councilman John Sentz said the clinic expands what’s already a wide variety of health services offered in the community.

“Fortunately or unfortunately, however you want to look at it, it puts Gilbert on the map as a center of excellence for cancer treatment and research,” he said.

Sentz credits Ironwood with saving his life last year when he underwent radiation, chemotherapy and eventually surgery to remove a large tumor. He chose Ironwood after a friend, who is a surgeon, recommended the clinic.

“The people were just wonderful,” Sentz said. “Not only were they professionally very good, but a caring group,” he said.

Ironwood’s expansion joins about 2 million square feet of medical and clinical trial space in Gilbert. The town is home to a cluster of health providers including Mercy Gilbert Medical Center, Banner Gateway Medical Center, M.D. Anderson Banner Cancer Center, the Celebration Stem Cell Centre and Gilbert Hospital.

Sentz said M.D. Anderson draws so many patients from afar that it built an on-site park for recreational vehicles.

“If people are in treatment and they’re from out of town, they can bring an RV and park it there,” he said.

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