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MSK Physicians at Norwalk Hospital

Through a pioneering collaboration with the world-renowned Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK), Norwalk Hospital’s C. Anthony and Jean Whittingham Cancer Center is taking its respected cancer program to an even higher level.

Now, Memorial Sloan Kettering medical and radiation oncologists are onsite at Norwalk Hospital – leading and delivering team-based care alongside Norwalk Hospital’s own cancer experts. It’s a powerful collaboration that offers both advanced science and highly personalized care. And, for patients, that adds up to more than a fighting chance.

Dr. Linda Vahdat, Chief of Medical Oncology & Clinical Director, Cancer Services at Norwalk Hospital
Dr. Daniel Shasha, Chief of Radiation Oncology

An exceptional collaboration that delivers exceptional benefits

Today, the majority of cancer care in the United States is delivered in the community, but cancer care advances can take years to become a standard of care. MSK Physicians at Norwalk Hospital aims to bridge this gap by bringing leading medical and radiation oncology experts to Norwalk Hospital and implementing MSK’s clinical practice of the two disciplines there. This approach will help ensure that residents can access the best drug- or radiation-based treatment options for their disease — while staying close to home.

By integrating MSK medical and radiation oncology experts and cutting-edge protocols into Norwalk Hospital’s already-strong cancer care program—the community reaps exceptional benefits:

  • High-quality, tailored cancer care, close to home. Patients will have access to Memorial Sloan Kettering oncologists experienced in treating cancer precisely with drug-based and radiation therapies at a location they already know and trust: Norwalk Hospital.
  • Norwalk Hospital will adopt Memorial Sloan Kettering’s clinical practice in medical and radiation oncology. Consistent care in these disciplines will help create the best outcomes for Norwalk Hospital’s patients.
  • More access to clinical trials. Norwalk Hospital patients will have access to cancer clinical trials both at Norwalk Hospital and at nearby MSK Westchester, Memorial Sloan Kettering’s freestanding outpatient treatment center in West Harrison, NY.

How this exciting new partnership works

Medical oncology and radiation oncology at Norwalk Hospital are now led by respected Memorial Sloan Kettering specialists. They practice full time at Norwalk Hospital alongside our current team of exceptional medical and radiation oncologists, as well as Norwalk Hospital’s surgeons, pathologists, nurses and other cancer experts.

The critical discipline of medical physics—the experts who tailor precise doses of radiation therapy for each patient—is now led by an MSK physicist.

The MSK physicians have appointments at Norwalk Hospital, and Norwalk’s six medical and radiation oncologists have consulting appointments at Memorial Sloan Kettering—continuing a tradition of working closely with their MSK colleagues to further our shared goal of delivering optimal cancer care.

Importantly, if you are currently undergoing cancer treatment at Norwalk Hospital, you remain a Norwalk Hospital patient—but now have the added benefit of local access to Memorial Sloan Kettering’s deep knowledge and expertise, as well as streamlined access to MSK facilities for more complex cases and clinical trials, if needed.  

Linda Vahdat, MD, MBA
Chief of Medical Oncology
Clinical Director, Cancer Services at Norwalk Hospital

Linda Vahdat is a medical oncologist and Chief of Medical Oncology and Clinical Director of Cancer Services at Norwalk Hospital. She is also a professor of medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College. She sees patients at both Norwalk Hospital and MSK.

Dr. Vahdat has more than 20 years of experience in caring for people with breast cancer, with particular expertise in triple negative breast cancer, metastatic breast cancer, and breast cancer that is at high risk of recurring.
Her research aims to find new therapies, particularly for triple-negative breast cancer, and strategies that target the area immediately surrounding tumors, not just the tumors themselves, to prevent breast cancer from spreading.

She received her medical degree from Mount Sinai School of medicine and completed a residency there. She also completed a fellowship in hematology and oncology at MSK. 

Daniel Shasha, MD
Chief of Radiation Oncology

Daniel Shasha is a radiation oncologist and Chief of Radiation Oncology at Norwalk Hospital. He has more than 21 years of experience in caring for people with genitourinary cancers, including prostate cancer, bladder cancer, kidney cancer, and testicular cancer. He has particular expertise in using advanced minimally invasive techniques, such as brachytherapy, image-guided radiation therapy, and stereotactic body radiation therapy. He also uses radiation therapy to provide palliative care for people with advanced bone, spine, and brain tumors. He sees patients at both Norwalk Hospital and MSK.

Dr. Shasha has performed close to 4,000 brachytherapy seed implants for prostate cancer treatment. These advanced techniques also help reduce the possibility of negative side effects that can impact their quality of life, such as urinary, bowel, or sexual function.

He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Illinois Champagne-Urbana and his medical degree from McGill University School of Medicine in Montreal. He completed his post-graduate residency training at MSK.

Hsiang-Chi Kuo, MD
Chief Physicist, Radiation Oncology Department

Dr. Hsiang-Chi Kuo is a medical physicist in the Clinical Physics Service at Memorial Sloan Kettering and Chief Physicist in the Radiation Oncology Department at Norwalk Hospital. Dr. Kuo work closely with radiation oncologists to provide technical support and to consult on planning and delivering radiation treatment at Norwalk Hospital.

Dr. Kuo has a special interest in using advanced radiation techniques to ensure that patients receive the safest, most-precise treatments. These include intensity-modulated radiation therapy, image-guided radiation therapy, low- and high-dose radiation, and stereotactic body radiation therapy. Dr. Kuo is also interested in comparing the effectiveness of various techniques for planning treatment. Dr. Kuo studies treatment outcomes using data mining and data modeling. This information helps improve radiation therapy for patients.

Dr. Kuo received his doctorate from the National Tsing Hua University in Taiwan in 2010, and joined MSK in 2017. He is board certified in therapeutic medical physics.

Daniel Boxer

Hematology-Oncology

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Richard Frank

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Nair Kesav G

Kesav Nair

Internal Medicine, Medical Oncology

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George Zahrah

Hematology, Internal Medicine, Medical Oncology

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Zelkowitz Richard S

Richard Zelkowitz

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Pathare Pradip M

Pradip Pathare

Radiation Oncology, Radiology

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How are Norwalk Hospital and Memorial Sloan Kettering working together?

Norwalk Hospital and MSK are jointly launching MSK Physicians at Norwalk Hospital. This new cancer care collaboration will integrate Memorial Sloan Kettering medical and radiation oncology doctors and care practices with the existing cancer program at the C. Anthony and Jean Whittingham Cancer Center. MSK medical and radiation oncologists will now work alongside Norwalk Hospital’s team of oncologists, many of whom have been collaborating with their MSK colleagues for years. The new partnership combines the strengths of each institution and gives people in our community access to world-class cancer care.

Why is this new partnership good news for patients and our community?

The majority of cancer care in the United States is delivered in the community, yet cancer care advances and new treatments can take years to become the standard of care. MSK Physicians at Norwalk Hospital aims to bridge this gap by bringing leading medical and radiation oncology experts from MSK to Norwalk Hospital and implementing MSK’s clinical practice for these two disciplines. This approach will help ensure that Norwalk Hospital patients have access to the best drug- and radiation-based treatment options for their disease, while staying close to home.

What makes this collaboration special?

This is a unique model of collaboration through which Memorial Sloan Kettering medical and radiation oncologists are onsite at Norwalk Hospital leading and delivering team-based care alongside Norwalk Hospital’s own cancer experts.

Will my insurance or billing change?

No, insurance and billing will not change. If you are a current patient of Norwalk Hospital/Western Connecticut Medical Group, you will continue to receive two bills where applicable; one bill for the physician’s professional services (including MSK physicians) and one bill for clinical services (lab, radiology, chemotherapy).

Will I be able to see my current physician/s and support staff?

Yes, patients who currently receive cancer treatment at Norwalk Hospital will remain Norwalk Hospital patients under the care of their existing physician. New patients who wish to make an appointment at the Whittingham Cancer Center can call 203-845-4811.

Will patients be considered Norwalk Hospital patients or MSK patients?

Patients treated at Norwalk Hospital will remain Norwalk Hospital patients, and will have access to the deep knowledge MSK offers, as well as easy access to MSK facilities for complex cases and clinical trials, if needed.

Where can I call for more information?

To learn more about MSK Physicians at Norwalk Hospital, call 203-845-4811.