Carteret Health Care provides an outstanding comprehensive range of oncology services to meet the needs of cancer patients and their caregivers. We partner with our patients in the fight against cancer. Our goal is to improve the quality of life of patients by offering a full spectrum of cancer services close to family, friends and home. Carteret Health Care offers expertise and knowledge that normally would not be available in a community hospital.
The medical and radiation oncology services are enhanced by a partnership with the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center and UNC Cancer Care to promote community wide strategies to improve cancer screenings, facilitate early detection and treatment, enhance treatment planning and professional education and streamline the process for patients who may seek second opinions at UNC Cancer Care. One of the advantages of the affiliation is the use of the University of Chapel Hill's (UNC-CH) Institutional Review Board (IRB) which provides the essential elements of experienced research support staff, technology as well as a variety of potential clinical research studies based on Carteret County's specific patient population and cancer types. Patients will now have access to Phase I, II and III clinical trials for medical oncology and radiation oncology and be seen here at Carteret Health Care.
National Cancer Accreditation
Carteret Health Care’s Cancer Program is part of an elite group of hospitals receiving a three-year accreditation from the Commission on Cancer (CoC) of the American College of Surgeons (ACoS).
Accreditation by the CoC is given only to those facilities that are committed to providing the highest level of quality cancer care and that undergo a rigorous evaluation process and review of their performance. To earn CoC accreditation, we met a litany of quality care standards with an emphasis on patient-centered care. The designation ensures that Carteret Health Care provides a full spectrum of services necessary to diagnose, treat and rehabilitate cancer patients while also providing support to the family.
Quality Oncology Practice Initiative
Carteret Health Care’s Cancer Center is the eighth facility in North Carolina to be recognized by the Quality Oncology Practice Initiative Certification Program, an affiliate of the American Society of Clinical Oncology. This recognition signifies that our outpatient hematology-oncology practices meet the highest standards for quality cancer care.
Raab Oncology patient services are available in the Cancer Center inside Carteret Health Care Medical Center located at 3500 Arendell Street, Morehead City, where patients receive services such as medical oncology, chemotherapy and hematology.
The 7,000 square foot clinic offers 8 treatment stations for chemotherapy and two private rooms for patients who desire more privacy. Carteret Health Care is sensitive to the spiritual and emotional needs of patients and their loved ones. A beautiful garden area with flowers and bird feeders can be viewed from the treatment area. Personal televisions DVD players and guided imagery are available to all patients and caregivers. A massage therapist who is specialized in oncology offers foot and chair massages.
Board Certified Oncologists
Dr. James Loynes is American Board Certified in Oncology, Hematology and Internal Medicine. Prior to coming to Morehead City, he operated a private practice in Virginia for five years. He is committed to a patient centered model of care. Dr. Loynes is a graduate of the College of Charleston and the Medical University of South Carolina. He completed an Internal Medicine residency at Vanderbilt University and is fellowship trained in Hematology and Oncology at Dartmouth. He enjoys spending time with his wife and their three children.
Dr. Luis Cuervo is American Board Certified in Internal Medicine. He earned his medical degree at the University of Texas Medical Branch and completed his Residency and Fellowship at Scott and White Hospital. Dr. Cuervo is also Field Surgeon in the Army National Guard. He enjoys reading, soccer, racquetball and spending time with his wife, daughter and son.
Dr. Rusthoven has participated in the Cancer Committee since 2014, and is the rising Cancer Committee chairman at Carteret Health Care. Prior to coming to CHC, he served as the Cancer Committee Chairman and Director of Radiation Oncology at CarolinaEast Medical Center for four years. Dr. Rusthoven is considered a national leader in Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy and has extensive experience in the treatment of lung, breast, prostate, gastrointestinal, gynecologic, brain, head, and neck cancers and lymphoma. He has special interest and expertise in advanced radiation techniques, including Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy, Stereotactic Radiosurgery, and Brachytherapy.
Dr. Watkins is the former director of the Department of Radiation Oncology at Columbus Regional Hospital in Indiana. Also served as a Radiation Oncologist at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington DC. Clinical expertise in general is radiotherapy, including skin, breast, prostate, lung, gastrointestinal, head and neck, and central nervous system cancers.
Cancer Care Certified Nurses and Team
A full time Oncology Advance Nurse Practitioner and team of certified oncology nurses work with the oncologists to provide the highest possible level of care with compassion and concern, close to home.
Throughout the care you will receive at Carteret Health Care we are dedicated to sharing as much information as possible to help you and your loved ones understand each and every step along the care process. Through education - we partner with our patients and create a customized treatment plan for the body, mind and soul.
A nurse navigator guides patients through the various services and connect them with appropriate resources and support. The Oncology Nurse Navigator is involved in the coordination of care from initial referral to the Cancer Center through cancer treatment. The Navigator not only guides patients and families through that process, but works as a go-between for the members of the healthcare team. Matching resources for cancer survivorship with patients is another essential focus for the Nurse Navigator.
Our clinical dietitian will work in partnership with you to share nutrition information and planning as well as to answer any nutrition-related concerns and questions before, during or after treatment. Healthy eating is especially important for people diagnosed with cancer. Good nutrition helps the body fight cancer, as well as cope with the effects of cancer treatment.
Our social worker assists patients with needs associated with their treatment and provides information, referral and advocacy services for social security/disability, financial assistance, cancer education and support. Individual and family counseling and support groups are available for patients and loved ones to help cope with the emotional and spiritual impact of cancer.
Our breast cancer specialists are nationally recognized for their research and expertise in detecting, evaluating and treating all types of breast cancer. Whether you come to us for routine mammograms, breast cancer treatments, or a second opinion, our goal is to provide the best possible care for your breast health, and exceed your expectations.
We use the latest technologies and research findings to detect abnormal breast lumps and masses, and treat all types of breast cancer. And, if you require breast reconstruction, our plastic surgeons are available to discuss your options.
Dr. Mindy Merritt is certified by the American Board of Surgery and is a member of the American Society of Breast Surgeons. Dr. Merritt completed a fellowship in breast cancer surgery at the Levine Cancer Institute, Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, NC. During the multi-disciplinary fellowship, she was exposed to all aspects of breast care including management of genetically predisposed and high-risk patients. She also trained with medical oncology, radiation oncology and plastic surgery among other disciplines. In addition to her interest in breast care, she also has special interests in thyroid surgery and abdominal surgery.
Dr. Klainer is board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. He has been a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons for 17 years, is a Clinical Instructor with Cynosure Lasers and has been Medical Director for American Laser Skincare.
Highly sophisticated equipment allow for early detection services such as ACR certified Digital and 3-D Mammography, CT Scanners and a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) with Breast Coil and PET CT.
Coleman Radiation Oncology has the advantage of the latest advances in radiation therapy. Our team is composed of a Radiation Oncologist, radiation therapists, medical dosimetrist, medical radiation physicists and an oncology nurse will carefully plan, monitor and carry out each patient's course of radiation treatment.
Radiation Oncology offers the following:
- New patient consultations
- Follow-up care for previously treated patients
- 3-D Conformal Radiation Treatment Planning - This is a special way of planning using CT Scans or MRI Scans to define Tumor Volume in 3 dimensions including width, height and depth
- IMRT - Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy - It is the most technically advanced, most precise method of external beam radiation therapy. It allows Radiation Oncologists to deliver high doses of radiation directly to the tumors while sparing surrounding healthy tissue.
- IGRT - Image Guided Radiation Therapy - IGRT uses a variety of digital imaging techniques to pinpoint exact location of a target tumor while the patient is in treatment position, prior to each daily treatment. It is the most advanced and precise form of radiation therapy today.
- Electron Beam Therapy - Optimal for treating superficial skin lesions. This type of treatment spares deeper tissues and organs of any radiation side effects such as electrons produced by the linear accelerator.
- CT Scanner - Toshiba 16 wide bore - Multi-slice CT Scanner is the most important tool for radiation treatment planning. Providing high definition of the tumor volume, assessment of tumor motion with respiratory gating and aids in geometric placement of radiation fields.
- Clinical Trials - National Clinical Trials are studies that test new methods of optimizing cancer treatments. These trials are often used in conjunction with chemotherapeutic drugs. Some of the trials being offered here at Coleman focus on prostate, head/neck, and brain cancers.
Cancer Screenings, Education and Support Groups
Annually, the Hospital sponsors free Prostate Screenings for men plus free Skin Cancer Screenings and free Breast Cancer Screenings.
Support groups and educational sessions are offered throughout the year. Call 252-808-6642 for details about the following:
- Monthly Lunch & Learns Video conferences with UNC Cancer Network.
- Cancer Transitions Workshop -Offered by Raab Oncology and Carolina Well, UNC Lineberger Survivorship Program, this is a free 2 hour, four week workshop designed to help cancer survivors make the transition from active treatment to post-treatment care. Expert panelists include physicians, nutritionists and fitness experts.
- Head & Neck Cancer Support Group - For individuals who are in treatment or have been treated for head and neck cancer.
- Leukemia/Lymphoma/Myeloma Support Group - For patients with leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma.
- Look Good Feel Better for Female Cancer Patients - Learn tips for hairstyling, skin & nail care and make-up.
- Tickled Pink Breast Cancer Support - For breast cancer survivors.