San Diego Business Journal

A $59 million cancer center on the campus of Scripps Mercy Hospital that’s geared toward the central and southern parts of San Diego recently broke ground.

The outpatient facility — set to open to patients in spring 2022 — will house radiation therapy, patient support services, and a 20-chair infusion center for chemotherapy, targeted therapy, immunotherapy and other treatments.

It will be the second Scripps Health cancer hub, both of which are under a partnership with the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. In 2012, the first hub opened in La Jolla, with other Scripps hospitals and outpatient sites also offering cancer care.

Called the Prebys Cancer Center, it’s named after the late philanthropist Conrad Prebys, who in 2016 pledged a $20 million gift toward the facility and a $5 million gift for an endowed medical director position. The facility’s name and gifts were unveiled during an Aug. 9 groundbreaking ceremony.

A History of Giving

This wasn’t his first donation to Scripps, having contributed $45 million toward the Prebys Cardiovascular Institute on the campus of Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla, as well as $10 million supporting the Conrad Prebys Emergency and Trauma Center at Scripps Mercy Hospital San Diego.

A mixture of philanthropy, borrowing and operating income will fund the 40,000-square-foot, four-story outpatient center.

Scripps called the facility’s approach multidisciplinary.

“Prebys Cancer Center will complement our multidisciplinary team approach to cancer care, by bringing physicians, caregivers and services around the patient in a single location,” Dr. Thomas Buchholz said in a news release, medical director of Scripps MD Anderson Cancer Center and a Scripps clinic radiation oncologist.

Recently Buchholz also assumed the Conrad Prebys executive medical directorship, made possible through the $5 million endowment gift.

The Partnership

Scripps in 2016 partnered with MD Anderson, creating an offering that’s overseen by physicians and administrators from both organizations. It competes with UC San Diego Health System, another prominent cancer care provider, among others.

Along with radiation therapy and the infusion center, the new center will have space for treatment planning conferences, patient exams and consultations, physician offices and patient support services. A 140-space parking garage is slated to adjoin the facility.