Baptist Cancer Center Taps New Director

baptist_blue_iconBaptist Cancer Center taps new director

MEMPHIS, Tenn., May 10, 2013- Baptist Memorial Health Care announced today Dr. Stephen B. Edge will be the medical director of the Baptist Cancer Center.


He will assume his new position in July 2013, and his duties will include oversight of the construction of the new Cancer Center building, slated to open in 2014 near the Baptist Memorial Hospital-Memphis campus.


Most recently, Edge served as the Alfiero Foundation Endowed Chair in Breast Oncology in the department of surgical oncology at Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo, N.Y. He is a graduate of Tufts University in Medford, Mass., earned his medical degree from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland and completed his internship and residency at University Hospitals of Cleveland. Edge completed his fellowship at the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Md.


While at Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Edge served in several different roles, including chair of the department of health services and chief of the breast division in the department of surgical oncology.


In addition to his clinical role, Edge has been active in cancer care research and national policy development. His primary research focus has been in defining quality assessment tools for cancer care and systems to improve community-wide cancer care. He is the immediate past-chair of the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons, immediate past-chair of the American Joint Committee on Cancer, and editor of the seventh edition of the American Joint Committee on Cancer Staging Manual. Edge currently serves on the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network and as a co-chair of the technical expert panel on cancer quality measures for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.



Nationally recognized for his clinical and research work, Edge has published more than 170 peer-reviewed papers in oncology medical literature. He has received numerous awards, including the Statesman Award from the American Society of Clinical Oncology, and a New York Gubernatorial Award for his work in cancer survivorship.

‘‘It’s an exciting time for Baptist as we head into our second century of caring for the Mid-South community,” said Jason Little, executive vice president and chief operating officer at Baptist. “Having a strong leader like Dr. Edge at the helm of the Cancer Center will enable us to take cancer care to the next level.”

The Baptist Cancer Center brings together cancer providers in all medical disciplines in Memphis and across the Baptist network to foster high quality, patient-centered cancer care.

“The Baptist Cancer Center, extending from Jonesboro, Ark., in the north to Memphis and to Oxford and Columbus, Miss., in the south, will build on the strengths of the many physicians, nurses, and other professionals that already provide top-notch care,” says Edge. “Together we will build a patient-centered, integrated cancer program that will be unique to the region.”

The centerpiece of Baptist’s cancer services will be a new building near the campus of Baptist Memphis. In March 2013, the state of Tennessee approved Baptist’s certificate of need to build the Cancer Center, which will be the only one of its kind in the area. Its location near the Baptist Memphis campus puts it close to services cancer patients need, including physician offices and multidisciplinary clinics, which offer cancer patients specialized care based on the type of cancer they have. The Center will offer diagnostics, radiation oncology, chemotherapy and infusion, Cyberknife (a non-invasive treatment for tumors), and stem cell transplant, as well as supportive services and survivorship care.


In addition to the new cancer center building in Memphis, Baptist is also building a cancer center in Jonesboro to complement its existing programs across the network.

The goal is for the Cancer Center to become a regional resource for cancer patients and their families, according to Baptist leadership. In his role as director, Edge will set and implement strategic goals regarding cancer care, lead the effort to establish multidisciplinary care across the Baptist network, oversee academic fellows, and recruit and retain a medical staff that is well-known for their expertise and represents a wide breadth of specialties within cancer care. He will also oversee cancer education programs, seminars and conferences for medical staff, among other duties.

In October 2012, Baptist announced its academic affiliation with Vanderbilt University, paving the way for joint quality initiatives and scientific programs, more clinical research and development of disease-specific programs, according to Baptist leadership. Edge will play a pivotal role in nurturing and developing the relationship between Baptist and Vanderbilt, especially with clinical trials and treatment standards. Baptist leadership further commented that Edge will serve as a catalyst for pulling all the components of the cancer program together and delivering an integrated, advanced standard of cancer care.

According to statistics from the Memphis chapter of the American Cancer Society, 35,610 new cancer cases were diagnosed in Tennessee in 2012, and that number is expected to grow during the next several years. In addition, more people are surviving cancer, and they need convenient access to outpatient services, noted Sean Henneberger, associate executive director of the American Cancer Society, Memphis office. He added having an integrated center for cancer services will help make care more efficient and convenient for patients, as well as help facilitate optimal outcomes.

One of the largest not-for-profit health care systems in the United States, Baptist Memorial Health Care offers a full continuum of care to communities throughout the Mid-South. The Baptist system, which consistently ranks among the top integrated health care networks in the nation, comprises 14 affiliate hospitals in West Tennessee, North Mississippi and East Arkansas; more than 4,000 affiliated physicians; Baptist Medical Group, a multispecialty physician group with more than 400 providers; home, hospice and psychiatric care; minor medical centers and clinics; a network of surgery, rehabilitation and other outpatient centers; and an education system highlighted by the Baptist College of Health Sciences.

For more information about Baptist, please visit or call 800-4-BAPTIST.