Creating a new standard of care

Bringing rigorous, evidence-based practices to cancer treatment, Transforming Cancer Care will change not just the prognosis and experience of cancer patients here at Stanford, but the way the American medical system treats cancer patients nationwide. Guided by a patient advisory council, our team is carefully auditing and redesigning how patients and their families make their journeys—from first appointment through long-term follow-up.

Cancer patients and their families are helping us design a system of personalized care, with care plans built on individual needs and goals—easy navigation; patients’ unique genetic, biological, and medical profiles; and the specific breakthroughs in immunotherapy, genomics, and stem cell medicine that are most likely to be effective for each patient. Only practices proven to deliver the best outcomes in the most cost-effective ways will become part of these plans.

As fully informed partners in all decision making, patients and their families will have the support of comprehensive educational tools and long-term survivorship programs. Long after treatment is finished, our physicians will monitor each patient’s genetic predictors to help prevent recurrences and drive down costs. And to make this new standard of care available to the Bay Area as quickly as possible, we’re building new community partnerships to reach patients closer to their homes.


Tony Ricciardi says the first oncologist he saw after being diagnosed with stage 3 lung cancer “systematically removed all hope.” A friend advised him to go to the Stanford Cancer Institute, where he met Heather Wakelee, MD (whom he’s hugging at right). “She just handled it like I had a runny nose and said: ‘We cure people like you all the time.’” Four years after simultaneous chemo and radiation, Tony is still cancer free. “The echo of that first guy’s voice still rings in my ears,” he says. “I haven’t done any victory dances, but I did get a reprieve for however long it might last—and that’s given me so much.”

Watch Tony's Story


The Stanford Vision

In the first five years of Transforming Patient Care we anticipate:

  • Creating a new standard of cancer care that’s effective, efficient, affordable, and transforms our nation’s current medical practices
  • Sharing our findings and inspiring partners across industry, government, academia, and philanthropy to join this movement
  • Building a global model for care delivery that meets the unique needs of every patient and family touched by cancer
  • Studying and adopting proofs of concept and new cost-effective tactics as they emerge in other disease areas
  • Seeding innovation awards to fund the most creative research ideas and fuel the engine of discovery at Stanford