US Oncology Designates Fogarty Klein Monroe

Fogarty Klein Monroe has won a regional review for the account of US Oncology, the nation’s largest outpatient cancer network.

The Houston shop’s hiring comes as the client consolidates project work that is spread out among agencies nationwide.

“It also acknowledges that US Oncology has changed significantly in the past year in terms of size,” said client vice president of marketing Alvis Swinney, referring to the 1999 merger of American Oncology Resources and Physician Reliance Network. “We just felt the need to have a partnership with an organization that had a comprehensive range of services.”

The initial $1 million budget will be focused on investor relations, according to Dan Keeney, general manager of FKM Public Relations and the point person on the account.

“The first order of business is to help them tell their story to the business community,” Keeney said. “Ultimately, we’ll be working on trade- and consumer-targeted advertising … but that will be a second-phase effort.”

US Oncology treats an estimated 15 percent of the nation’s cancer patients—about 500,000 people—at nearly 500 sites in 27 states.

Included in the number of locations are 73 cancer centers, which the Houston-based company owns and operates. US Oncology is shifting its business model to focus on opening more of these facilities in metropolitan areas, Keeney said.

“The future is to have a one-stop place that meets all the needs of cancer patients in the area so they don’t have to get on a plane to have PET scan or radiation treatment,” he said. “It puts less stress on them physically and emotionally.”

Previous advertising has consisted of consumer-targeted messages in local markets where new clinics were being opened.

“Now we are looking at some more national advertising … to create greater visibility for the company in financial markets,” Swinney said.