The Simmons Cancer Institute at Southern Illinois University (SIU) was created to serve the people of central and southern Illinois and throughout the world to address their present and future cancer care needs through a comprehensive approach of education, research and patient services. The Cancer Institute is a community-based patient care, research, education and outreach program established to improve cancer care. It is an effort made possible by the partners at Simmons Hanly Conroy who made a record $10.2 million total donation comprised of annual gifts and a multi-year pledge to help fund the development. The Cancer Institute held its grand opening on Thursday, July 10 at 11 a.m.
“It’s no secret that the legal profession gets a bad rap,” says John Simmons, Simmons Hanly Conroy founding partner. “Titles aside, our ultimate goal as trial attorneys is the same goal of the doctors and nurses who will soon begin work inside the Simmons Cancer Institute – to prevent and alleviate the suffering of others. And as a firm rooted in helping mesothelioma cancer victims, we are especially proud to be sponsoring this institute.”
“The Simmons Cancer Institute is a physical representation of the good work our attorneys do every day to bring justice to our clients,” explains Simmons. “Such state-of-the-art facilities aren’t built every day and we’re eager to help SIU celebrate the millions of lives this Cancer Institute will positively impact.”
The Simmons Cancer Institute at SIU spans 63,000 square feet and will serve as a center of cancer care and research for downstate Illinois as well as a new front door for the medical school campus in Springfield. With three floors and a lower level, it consolidates most of the School’s multi-disciplinary cancer clinics, now located in several hospital buildings, along with research and outreach services. Seven of SIU’s nine cancer care teams will be housed in the building – breast, colorectal, gynecologic oncology, head and neck, hematology/oncology, prostate and lung. About 55 SIU physician faculty and support staff will be based in the clinical areas of the building.
Learn more about Simmons Hanly Conroy’s fight against malignant mesothelioma.
About the Building
The Simmons Cancer Institute faces east on a two-plus acre site, a partial city block bounded by Carpenter, Rutledge and Miller Streets, a few blocks from downtown Springfield, Ill. The main entrance is on the corner of Rutledge and Carpenter streets.
The circular form of the building serves as an easily recognizable and inviting entryway to the School of Medicine campus. The exterior brick matches other campus buildings, and the green glass windows provide a warm light to the interior.
The reception and lobby area feature an open floor plan using natural limestone and wood tones to make the space feel welcoming. The color palette includes warm neutrals of cream and brown with blue and green accents to provide a relaxing atmosphere for patients and families. The entire building has wireless internet access.
Patients will be greeted at the reception desk in the main lobby. Level 1 includes a chemotherapy/infusion area with 20 stations and two clinic areas with 23 exam rooms and four minor procedure rooms. There is an on-site laboratory. The floor also has a large multi-purpose conference room, a Patient and Family Learning Resource Center and a small café.
The Women’s Health Care Cancer Center on Level 2 includes X-ray, mammography, ultrasound, nine exam rooms and a minor procedure room. Also located here are SIU’s offices for cancer research and clinical trials teams as well as an office for the Breast Cancer Network of Strength support group. Administrative and physician offices and a conference room are also located on this level.
Translational research laboratories will be developed on Level 3.
Medical records storage, receiving, security, data, boiler room and other building support rooms are housed in the lower level.
“What you guys do, it matters. Once the financial weight is off your brain, it’s easier to worry about the things that matter…my treatments, getting better and quality of life. Simmons has been a super huge blessing to us.”