Thomas J. Rutherford, MD, PhD, Named Network Physician Director of Cancer Services at Western Connecticut Health Network

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In his new role, Dr. Rutherford will create a new model of cancer care delivery that will enhance the growth of existing programs at the Western Connecticut Health Network cancer centers; Praxair Cancer Center at Danbury Hospital, Diebold Family Cancer Center at New Milford Hospital and the Whittingham Cancer Center at Norwalk Hospital.

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"WCHN delivers the same quality and standard of care, if not better, than anywhere in the country, at a better value, with easy accessibility within our local communities by a friendly care team," Dr. Rutherford said.

Western Connecticut Health Network (WCHN) has named nationally known gynecologic oncologist Thomas J. Rutherford, MD, PhD, an expert in the area of ovarian cancer, as the Network Physician Director of Cancer Services.

As director, Dr. Rutherford will create a new model of cancer delivery in the dynamic "Accountable Care" environment that builds on the strengths and enhances the growth of the existing programs for the Praxair Cancer Center at Danbury Hospital, Diebold Family Cancer Center at New Milford Hospital and the Whittingham Cancer Center at Norwalk Hospital.

"WCHN delivers the same quality and standard of care, if not better, than anywhere in the country, at a better value, with easy accessibility within our local communities by a friendly care team," Dr. Rutherford said. "I am looking forward to integrating the many excellent cancer programs, services, and the outstanding expertise of our cancer care team at WCHN to continue to grow our efforts to provide the highest quality and standard of cancer care to our patients."

Over the next few years, Dr. Rutherford will lead the expansion of the WCHN cancer services. His philosophy is total cancer care from prevention, high risk screening, research, genomics, a personal and individualized treatment plan, supportive care, survivorship, as well as the end of life care to support the unique medical and personal needs of every patient and their family. He believes that the disease-site­ specific programs comprised of interdisciplinary teams led by surgeons, medical oncologists and radiation oncologists will develop a unified state-of-the-art treatment plan for all of our patients at each WCHN Cancer Center.

"We are thrilled to have Dr. Rutherford join the WCHN family and lead our expert cancer team," said President and CEO, Dr. John Murphy. "Tom has an outstanding reputation for his clinical and research experience, and compassionate approach to caring for patients. His vision and leadership will enhance the great care provided by an excellent team in place today and guide us as we transform cancer care for our community."

Dr. Rutherford is a board-certified gynecological oncologist and one of the nation's leading authorities on gynecologic cancers. Prior to WCHN, Dr. Rutherford practiced at Yale Gynecologic Oncology. Most recently, he served as Professor of Gynecologic Oncology and Director of Gynecologic Oncology Fellowship at Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, Conn., a position he held for 12 years. During that time, Dr. Rutherford played a key leadership role in the development of the gynecologic oncology department, including growing a research division that encompassed basic and translational research at both the institutional and cooperative group levels. A recognized researcher, Dr. Rutherford has focused on prevention, early detection, and treatment of ovarian cancer and other gynecologic malignancies. He has authored more than 100 scientific journal articles, worked to isolate the stem cell associated with ovarian cancer and developed the standard of care for the treatment of ovarian cancer.

Dr. Rutherford will continue to influence the evolution of WCHN's cancer research program with emphasis on basic science research that will lead to translational clinical programs, clinical trial development and novel therapies.

Dr. Rutherford obtained his bachelor's degree from Roanoke College and his doctoral and medical degrees from the Medical College of Ohio at Toledo.

Contact Information

Dr. Rutherford will be available for consultation in three locations: Norwalk Hospital, Danbury Hospital and Saint Vincent's Hospital in Bridgeport. For appointments/consults, please call (203) 299-0290. To contact Dr. Rutherford related to his Physician Director role, please email him at thomas.rutherford@wchn.org or via phone at (203) 739-6725.

About Western Connecticut Health Network Oncology Services

Western Connecticut Health Network is the region's leading provider of cancer care services. Danbury Hospital Praxair Cancer Center, New Milford Hospital Diebold Cancer Center and Norwalk Hospital Whittingham Cancer Center are nationally accredited as Comprehensive Care Programs by the American College of Surgeons (ACS). The Centers are the recipients of "Accreditation with Commendation" from the Commission on Cancer which recognizes cancer programs that strive for excellence in providing comprehensive, multidisciplinary quality care to cancer patients. At Western Connecticut Health Network, our patients and their families receive an exceptional level of care, support and access to clinical trials in a compassionate environment, close to home, by our multidisciplinary care team of experienced medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, surgical oncologists, pathologists, radiologists, oncology nurses along with our oncology nurse navigators and other specialists with advanced training.

Western Connecticut Health Network

Western Connecticut Health Network is the region's premier, patient-centered health care organization serving residents of Western Connecticut and adjacent New York. With this recent affiliation, the organization is now anchored by three nationally recognized hospitals, Danbury Hospital, New Milford Hospital and Norwalk Hospital, as well as their affiliated organizations. In addition to the three hospitals, the continuum of care offered includes numerous medical practices and sub-specialties across the region, home health care services, a nationally renowned biomedical research institute, the Western Connecticut Health Network Foundation, the Norwalk Hospital Foundation and other affiliates. For more information, visit TheNewWCHN.org. Share your comments with us at Facebook.com/DanburyHospital; Facebook.com/NewMilfordHospital and/or Facebook.com/NorwalkHospital.

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