A smart approach to cancer
“Technology is a necessary ingredient, but it’s not sufficient,” says cancer fighter Dr. Robert McLaurin -- and that may seem like an unusual statement coming from a man who has dedicated his life to beaming radioactivity into patients to kill malignant cells.
To paraphrase cyclist Lance Armstrong, he adds, “it’s not about the accelerator.”
Dr. McLaurin, owner of Franklin County Cancer Center and a radiation oncologist, explains that dealing with cancer is not merely about the size and power of the radiation-producing equipment, it’s also the careful, exacting control of the dose that can spell the difference between successful treatment and dangerous side effects.
And though precise control is a primary goal, personalized care is equally important -- and that’s why it’s not uncommon for Dr. McLaurin to cast a curious eye on the waiting room or even the parking lot of his Louisburg clinic to determine which patients are visiting for treatment and to make sure they are getting their treatments promptly and without unnecessary waiting.
Dr. McLaurin, who opened the Franklin County Cancer Center in the former Perry-Medders Clinic adjacent to Franklin Regional Medical Center in 2006, has drawn on a robust educational background to develop the skills necessary to create a concept he calls the SMART Clinic. (The clinic is not associated with FRMC.)