Fighting Cancer with Minimal Side Effects.

Do VA Health Care Benefits Cover Proton Therapy?

When diagnosed with cancer and given the option of proton therapy treatments, many ask this question. For Veterans who are receiving VA health care benefits, that answer is often yes. The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) policy allows veterans across the country access to proton therapy. The decision for proton therapy treatments is determined by the VHA attending radiation oncologist, a proton therapy specialist and you, the Veteran.

If radiation is a treatment option given to you by your VHA oncologist, ask about proton therapy.

Two scenarios that the VHA might consider proton therapy treatment is when certain cancers require retreatment, or reirradiation, and when the minimization of a patient’s overall radiation dose is crucial for their health during and after treatment.

The VHA also provides coverage for Veterans who participate in an approved clinical trial. The opportunity to participate in clinical trials through Karmanos Cancer Institute is available to McLaren Proton Therapy Center patients. Clinical trials help to maximize the positive impact on cancer patient’s lives and contributions to the advancement of proton therapy.

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Have questions about proton therapy? Simply reach out below and we will respond.

4100 Beecher Road, Flint, MI 48532
Hours: Monday - Friday: 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Phone: (855) 697-7686

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Lodging & Accommodations

What is Proton Therapy

Proton therapy is a radiation oncology treatment that uses protons to precisely target and treat tumors, while sparing healthy tissues and organs from unnecessary radiation. Standard cancer treatment options for patients include surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy. While all of these options may offer varying levels of benefit for a cancer patient, proton radiation therapy is often considered more effective against localized cancers.

Proton therapy most often treats solid tumors in sensitive areas where conventional therapy may not be considered as the best option.

Proton Therapy Frequently Asked Questions

Benefits of Proton Therapy

Meet Our Nurse Navigator: Nicole Cygnar

Meet Nicole Cygnar
Proton Therapy is non-invasive.

Proton therapy does not require surgical procedures to deliver treatment. As the patient lays on the table, radiation is delivered through protons that are directed to travel in the body, no further than the depth of the targeted tumor.

Patients experience minimal side effects.

With the advanced radiation technology at the McLaren Proton Therapy Center, protons deposit radiation energy to the target tumor to destroy the cancer cells, while sparing the surrounding healthy tissues. There is not an exit dose of radiation with proton therapy. The radiation doses precisely stop at the depth of the tumor, sparing nearby organs as much as 70 percent of unnecessary radiation. By not delivering radiation to those organs, many patients experience minimal side effects.

Proton therapy results in a better quality of life during and after treatment.

Patients that go through proton therapy treatment often can maintain a healthy and productive life. Many patients can continue the activities they love daily during treatment. Proton therapy also reduces the probability of secondary cancer due to the ability to spare healthy tissue.

Cancers Treated By Proton Therapy

  • Bladder Cancer
  • Brain and Central Nervous System Cancer
  • Breast Cancer
  • Esophageal Cancer
  • Head, Neck, and Skull Base Cancer
  • Kidney Cancer
  • Lymphoma
  • Liver Cancer
  • Lung and Thorax Cancer
  • Pancreatic Cancer
  • Pediatric Cancer
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Sarcoma
  • Spine and Chest Wall Cancer
  • Select Gynecological and Gastrointestinal Cancer
  • Recurrent disease

Directions and Overnight Accommodations

McLaren Proton Therapy Center

4100 Beecher Road
Flint, MI 48532
Hours: Monday - Friday: 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

(855) 697-7686

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McLaren Hospitality House

Located adjacent to McLaren Proton Therapy Center, McLaren Hospitality House provides comfortable, extended-stay housing at no or minimal cost and to create a healing, caring and comfortable environment for patients and their caregivers who are traveling long distances for treatment.

G-3170 Beecher Road
Flint, MI 48532

(810) 820-9800

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Lodging and Overnight Accommodations:
McLaren Hospitality House

McLaren Hospitality House in Flint, Michigan

Located adjacent to McLaren Proton Therapy Center, McLaren Hospitality House provides comfortable, extended-stay housing at no or minimal cost and to create a healing, caring and comfortable environment for patients and their caregivers who are traveling long distances for treatment.

A full complement of activities, programs, quiet spaces and amenities are available at the facility.

Patients receiving proton therapy require treatment daily for approximately six to eight weeks. McLaren Hospitality House was designed with this in mind and provides easy access to treatment, support services and care for other medical needs.

Call For Availability Learn more about McLaren Hospitality House.

Frequently Asked Questions

McLaren Proton Therapy Patient Testimonials

Marcus Jefferson

Prostate Cancer Survivor
McLaren Proton Therapy Patient

William Johnson

Prostate Cancer Survivor
McLaren Proton Therapy Patient

Darryl Rawls

Prostate Cancer Survivor
McLaren Proton Therapy Patient

Teresa Link

Breast Cancer Survivor
McLaren Proton Therapy Patient

Melissa Brown

Breast Cancer Survivor
McLaren Proton Therapy Patient

Bob Campbell

Prostate Cancer Survivor
McLaren Proton Therapy Patient

Dave Wood

Prostate Cancer Survivor
McLaren Proton Therapy Patient

Eugene Urcan

Prostate Cancer Survivor
McLaren Proton Therapy Patient

Carolyn Johnson

Thymoma Cancer Survivor
McLaren Proton Therapy Patient

Michael Zerka III

Hodgkin Lymphoma Cancer Survivor
McLaren Proton Therapy Patient