Bone marrow transplant survival rates recognized nationally

Fred Hutch BMT program at SCCA earns national recognition for 6th consecutive year
Fred Hutch Campus
The Fred Hutch Bone Marrow Transplant Program at Seattle Cancer Care Alliance has performed more than 16,000 bone marrow transplants, among the most in the world. This view of Fred Hutch's campus, located on South Lake Union in Seattle, includes the SCCA outpatient clinic, left, Fred Hutch's Robert M. Arnold Building, right, and the "Vessel" sculpture, foreground. Photo by Robert Hood / Fred Hutch News Service

The Fred Hutch Bone Marrow Transplant  Program at Seattle Cancer Care Alliance has once again earned national recognition for outperforming expected one-year survival rates. The Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research® issued the results in an annual report that is designed to provide potential stem cell transplant recipients, their families, and the public with comparative survival rates among transplant centers. This is the sixth consecutive year that the Fred Hutch BMT program at SCCA has achieved higher than expected one-year survival rates, an accomplishment achieved by only four other transplant centers in the report.

“Patients want to be assured that they’re receiving the best care to support survival, outstanding treatment outcomes, and continuous quality of life, and we’re proud of our record of six continuous years surpassing the expected survival rates for our allogeneic BMT program,” said Dr. Nancy E. Davidson, president, and executive director of SCCA and senior vice president of the Clinical Research Division at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. “Continued recognition by notable organizations like CIBMTR, NCI, and others provides credibility to support and reassure patients and referring physicians that the partners in our alliance make a marked difference in providing high-quality, validated options for cancer care.”

Allogeneic transplants use stem cells from a donor who may or may not be related to the patient. Stem cell transplants, including bone marrow transplants, are used to treat a wide range of leukemias and lymphomas, as well as other diseases including severe aplastic anemia and sickle cell disease.

Credited with pioneering the clinical use of bone marrow and stem cell transplantation more than 40 years ago, the Fred Hutch BMT program at SCCA has performed more than 16,000 bone marrow transplants, among the most in the world. Dr. E. Donnall Thomas’ groundbreaking work in transplantation won the Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine in 1990, and, as former president of the American Society of Hematology, his legacy continues today across the nation and world.

To arrive at its findings, CIBMTR independently examined the survival rates of 24,141 allogeneic bone marrow transplant patients. According to CIBMTR, a total of 177 transplant centers are represented in this analysis. Each of these centers performed at least one unrelated or related donor transplant over the three-year window from Jan. 1, 2014, to Dec. 31, 2016. During this period, 788 allogeneic transplants were performed at SCCA and met the criteria for the study.

The process of comparing transplant centers is complex and addresses several variables, including cancer type and stage, the patient’s age and pre-existing medical issues. Report findings allow BMT research centers to compare themselves to others to support improved outcomes. The report also provides patients and their families with valuable information necessary when evaluating treatment options.

Dr. Marco Mielcarek
Dr. Marco Mielcarek Photo by Robert Hood / Fred Hutch News Service

“We are extremely proud that patients receiving allogeneic bone marrow transplants at SCCA can expect survival rates that are consistently better than the expected one-year survival rates,” said Dr. Marco Mielcarek, medical director of the Adult Bone Marrow Transplant Program at SCCA and member of the Clinical Research Division at Fred Hutch. “Outcomes are attributable to many factors but our dedicated team, and their decades of transplant experience and groundbreaking research, are important contributors to sustaining exceptional outcomes. Our research has yielded consistent improvements in efficacy and safety of stem cell transplantation and our team is committed to continued improvements in outcomes for all of our patients.”

SCCA has ranked at the top of these patient survival rankings since 2002. Additionally, U.S. News & World Report for the past 13 years has ranked SCCA/University of Washington Medical Center among the top 10 best hospitals in the nation for adult cancer treatment.

— Based on an SCCA news release

Read more about Fred Hutch achievements and accolades.

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