My colleague Zach Binney has been keeping tabs on the proton therapy landscape, and wrote this nice piece on some recent developments: Roughly seven months after ProCure's first center came online in Oklahoma City, the third party proton therapy facilitator and financier closed financing for its third center, a joint venture with a health system (CentraState Health System) and radiation oncologist group (Princeton Radiation Oncology) in Somerset, New Jersey.
Somerset is only 60 miles away from the Roberts Proton Therapy Center at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. While two proton centers have never operated in such close proximity before, the area's high population density -- the site is located an approximately 30 minute drive from downtown New York City -- will likely alleviate competitive concerns. A full-scale facility is capable of treating approximately 1,500 patients per year, but the exact number of "proton therapy-eligible" patients in this region is difficult to gauge, as it is highly dependent on patient and physician preferences. Whether prostate cancer patients will flock to the facility in large numbers, for example, will depend in part on whether their referring physicians and the center's radiation oncologists feel protons are justifiable for the tumor site.
Proton Competition Accelerating in Northeast