Cancer Treatment Centers of America

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Cancer Treatment Centers of America
Cancer Treatment Centers of America Logo.png
Location United States
Care system Private
Hospital type Specialist
Speciality Cancer
Founded 1988
Lists Hospitals in the United States

Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA), headquartered in Boca Raton, Florida, is a national, for-profit network of five hospitals that serves cancer patients throughout the United States. CTCA follows an integrative approach to cancer care that uses conventional approaches like surgery, chemotherapy, radiation and immunotherapy to treat the cancer, while also offering integrative therapies to help manage side effects like pain, nausea, fatigue, lymphedema, malnutrition, depression and anxiety.

CTCA was originally headquartered in Schaumburg, Illinois. In January 2015, the corporate office was moved to Boca Raton, Florida, and was renamed Cancer Treatment Centers of America Global, Inc.[1]


CTCA was founded by Richard J Stephenson after his mother, who had cancer, died. Stephenson was not satisfied with the treatment options which were then available to his mother and opened the first CTCA hospital in 1988.[2] The first hospital to open was CTCA at Midwestern Regional Medical Center (Midwestern) in Zion, Illinois. Four other hospitals opened between 2005 and 2012.


CTCA opened the organization’s first international patient concierge and information office in the Lomas de Chapultepec neighborhood of Mexico City on April 20, 2015. CTCA also maintains an active brand presence in the Middle East, the Caribbean and Latin America, offering patients in these regions the opportunity to pursue treatment at one of the hospital system’s five U.S. cancer centers:


CTCA hospitals have earned Full Standards Compliance from the Joint Commission, as well as the Top Performer on Key Quality Measures and the Magnet Award.[4][5][6][7][8] CTCA has also been recognized for strong patient satisfaction scores, with four CTCA hospitals (Eastern, Midwestern, Southeastern and Southwestern) earning Five Star quality ratings by the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and recognition by various leading health care organizations, including the Association of Community Cancer Centers and the American College of Radiology.

Another accreditation comes from the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers, which has awarded three-year full accreditations for the breast programs at four CTCA hospitals (Southwestern, Eastern, Western and Midwestern). The NABPC has established 27 standards that must be met, including: breast center leadership, research, community outreach, professional education, clinical management and quality improvement.


Cancer Treatment Centers of America was the subject of a Federal Trade Commission (FTC) complaint in 1993. The FTC alleged that CTCA made false claims regarding the success rates of certain cancer treatments in CTCA's marketing and promotional materials. This claim was settled in March 1996, requiring CTCA to discontinue use of any unsubstantiated claims in its advertising.[9] CTCA is also required to have proven, scientific evidence for all statements regarding the safety, success rates, endorsements, and benefits of its cancer treatments. CTCA was also required to follow various steps in order to report compliance to the FTC per the settlement.

A 2013 Reuters special report stated that CTCA continues to make misleading survival rate claims on its website. Reuters asked cancer experts to review CTCA's claims that its survival rates were better than national averages. CTCA compared its outcomes with the National Cancer Institute's Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) database. The experts said that CTCA's patients and SEER's patients were not compatible, and that the comparison was biased in favor of CTCA. For example, CTCA's patients are younger, wealthier, better-insured, and more likely to be diagnosed early. Reuters said that CTCA screens patients for income and ability to pay, and refuses those who are on Medicare, Medicaid, or uninsured.[10]

In 2001, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued CTCA a Warning Letter concerning three clinical trials that were conducted in violation of FDA requirements.[11]

L. Kirk Hagen, humanities professor at the University of Houston-Downtown, points out that in CTCA's Web site is a disclaimer that reads [The CTCA] makes no claims about the efficacy of specific treatments, the delivery of care, nor the meaning of the CTCA and SEER analysis."[12]

In 2013, oncologist David Gorski, writing for Science Blogs, published an article that criticized CTCA for using pseudoscientific treatments (e.g., homeopathy) in addition to mainstream treatments. He stated that some "otherwise talented doctors" are now "complicit in the blurring of the line between science and pseudoscience in medicine while believing that they are doing good for the patient by giving them 'holistic care'. "[13]


  1. ^ "Media Kits for Journalists: CTCA". 
  2. ^ "Cancer Treatment Centers of America: History". Retrieved 2008-04-07. 
  3. ^ Nelms, Ben (July 10, 2011). "CEO named for Newnan hospital". The Citizen. Fayetteville, GA. Retrieved 2014-01-29. 
  4. ^ "The Joint Commission Quality Report". 
  5. ^ "QualityReport". Retrieved 2016-04-19. 
  6. ^ "QualityReport". Retrieved 2016-04-19. 
  7. ^ "QualityReport". Retrieved 2016-04-19. 
  8. ^ "QualityReport". Retrieved 2016-04-11. 
  9. ^ "Companies That Purport to Successfully Treat Cancer Agree to Settle FTC Charges over Their Claims" (Press release). Federal Trade Commission (FTC). March 13, 1996. Retrieved 2008-04-07. 
  10. ^ Begley, Sharon; Respaut, Robin (March 6, 2013). "Special report: Behind a cancer-treatment firm's rosy survival claims". Reuters. Retrieved 2014-01-29. 
  11. ^ Warning Letter to: Lloyd A. Shabazz, Cancer Treatment Centers of America (FDA Warning Letter) (Ref. No. CBER-01-016), Public Health Service; Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, US Dept. of Health and Human Services, February 23, 2001, retrieved 2014-01-29. 
  12. ^ Hagen, L. Kirk (2016). "The State of Tumortown". Skeptic. 21 (4): 45. ISSN 1063-9330. Retrieved August 4, 2017. 
  13. ^ Gorski, David (October 7, 2013). "Cancer Treatment Centers of America: Revisiting the epitome of "integrative" cancer care". Science-Based Medicine. Retrieved 2014-01-29. 

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