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New Ulm Medical Center

Virginia Piper Cancer Institute – New Ulm opens

Recently opened, the NUMC Cancer Center offers world-class treatment and amenities seldom found outside the big city.

The newly-opened Virginia Piper Cancer Institute – New Ulm is a state-of-the-art Cancer Center that offers high-quality care and facilities. VPCI – New Ulm officially opened on Nov. 7, and the community is ecstatic about it.

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Virginia Piper Cancer Institute-New Ulm opened to patients Monday, Nov. 9. The new space is more than double what the New Ulm Medical Center previously had available for cancer and infusion patients.

What’s New at the Cancer Center

Bigger is better. “We had outgrown our old facility, and this was becoming a major need for us,” said Lorna Holmberg, the manager of the new Cancer Center. “The new center is much larger and has many more rooms. It’s more than double the size of our old center.”

What’s more, the new center is organized more efficiently to better meet patient needs. Previously, the physicians and treatment areas were located in different parts of the clinic. Now the services are in the same suite, so patients can see the doctor and receive treatment without having to be shuttled around.

The center also features a cozy community area, complete with Internet access, individual TVs and heated chairs and blankets. Many of the patients opt to receive their infusions or other treatments in this area, so they can socialize with the other patients. “It almost becomes a support group for them,” said Holmberg. The private rooms have also been upgraded to make them roomier and more comfortable.

The crown jewel of the new Cancer Center will be the beautiful outdoor garden, which will be complete in spring 2012. Patients will be able to walk outside, reflect and even receive their treatments outdoors when the weather is nice.

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Kris Edwards, RN, helps LeAnn Krzmarzick get settled for her treatment in the new Virginia Piper Cancer Institute- New Ulm, just two days after the new center opened to patients.

Incredible New Opportunities

Beyond the physical upgrades, innovative treatment options at the new center have also grown by leaps and bounds. The Cancer Center is now affiliated with the Virginia Piper Cancer Institute in Minneapolis, which means it will have access to the vast resources and opportunities afforded to the larger cancer center.

Part of this affiliation includes genetic counseling, which began at the NUMC Cancer Center in October. “We will also be starting research and clinical trials at our center very soon,” said Holmberg. “In addition, we have a nurse that is training in integrative specialties for cancer. These include things such as massage, aromatherapy, music therapy and other alternative therapies that have been shown to be helpful for people with cancer.” Other opportunities will be for classes and support groups in the conference room and a resourse area for wigs and accessories.

The new Cancer Center is also staffed by a full-time oncologist, Ettore Piroso, MD, as well as nurses and other specialists certified in oncology care.

The public is welcome to see the new space at a Ribbon Cutting and Open House Sunday, Dec. 4 from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m., with the ribbon cutting taking place at 1:30 p.m. Tours of the new center will be available, as well as a snack and a small gift.

For more information about the new Cancer Center go to