Nebraska Medicine, UNK celebrate construction of new Kearney Cancer Center

KEARNEY – The next addition to the University of Nebraska at Kearney campus will bring expanded cancer care services to the central Nebraska region.

Officials from UNK and Nebraska Medicine were joined by other local leaders Tuesday during a reception celebrating construction of the Nebraska Medicine Kearney Cancer Center.

Expected to open next year at UNK’s University Village development, the new center is an expansion of the partnership between Nebraska Medicine and Heartland Hematology and Oncology that began in December 2021. The $33 million facility will offer a range of cancer services, including medical oncology, radiation oncology, infusion, laboratory and pharmacy services, survivorship programs, genetics counseling and a healing garden.

“This new state-of-the-art facility brings the nationally recognized cancer care Nebraska Medicine is known for to Kearney,” said Dr. Michael Ash, executive vice president-chief operating officer for Nebraska Medicine. “Patients in central Nebraska will now have added convenience and seamless access to that extraordinary care, right in their own community.”

Nebraska Medicine’s Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center in Omaha has a national reputation for cancer treatment and innovation, and the Kearney Cancer Center will provide the same level of care.

UNK Chancellor Doug Kristensen addresses the crowd during Tuesday's event at Discovery Hall on campus. (Photo by Erika Pritchard, UNK Communications)
UNK Chancellor Doug Kristensen addresses the crowd during Tuesday’s event at Discovery Hall on campus. (Photo by Erika Pritchard, UNK Communications)

“This is an opportunity for rural Nebraska to take advantage of the high-quality health services that Nebraska Medicine provides,” said UNK Chancellor Doug Kristensen. “We’re very proud to have this partnership with them, and we believe University Village is the perfect place for this project.”

The Kearney Cancer Center will span more than 53,000 square feet in the northwest corner of University Village, a mixed-use development that combines educational, residential, recreational and commercial opportunities in a pedestrian-friendly neighborhood. Construction is already underway at the site along U.S. Highway 30. The cancer center is the sixth project at University Village, with those investments totaling nearly $130 million.

In addition to serving residents here, the new medical facility will bring significant economic development benefits to the Kearney area and provide further opportunities for UNK and University of Nebraska Medical Center students to gain practical experience. It’s located near the existing Health Science Education Complex and the new Rural Health Education Building planned on campus.

“Bringing high-quality medical care to this community and to University Village is just the start. This is not the end,” Kristensen said. “This partnership is going to provide tremendous opportunities for years to come.”