About 45 percent of the people who visit the existing David Lee Cancer Center are from outside Kanawha County, Ramsey said.
More than 10,000 West Virginians will be diagnosed with cancer this year, while one in two men and one in three women in the country will have cancer sometime in their lives, he said.
From 2004 to 2011, the number of patients who went to the David Lee Cancer Center more than doubled, from 17,000 to 40,000 patients, Pitchford said.
"We are providing an environment that is conducive to healing," she said.
One of the most significant changes from the David Lee Cancer Center to the CAMC cancer center (Ramsey said an official name has yet to be decided) is the "great room."
Pitchford said that when patients walk into the David Lee Cancer Center today, they see a crowded waiting room that has an "uncomfortable feeling."
The great room is a three-story tall room on the first floor that is "inviting," "beautiful" and will have a central seating area and fireplace for visitors, she said.
The first floor also will feature a wig and prosthesis shop, a café and coffee shop, a patient reference library, waiting rooms and Charleston Radiation Therapy Consultants.
The David Lee Cancer Center will occupy the entire second floor of the new building.
Ramsey said there are no definite plans for the third floor. The space will remain open so that the cancer center has room to grow, he said.
The CAMC Foundation has raised more than $12 million in its grass-roots campaign. The goal is to raise $15 million of the total $40 million cost.
More than 1,600 people have donated anywhere from $2 to $2 million, Pitchford said.
On Nov. 28, CAMC's board approved a resolution to seek requests for proposals from local and national banks to borrow up to $50 million for the hospital's upcoming projects. Ramsey said $24 million of that would go toward building the cancer center.
The physicians who work at Charleston Radiation Therapy Consultants will pay the remaining $1 million, because they are occupying a majority of the center's first floor, Ramsey said.
To donate or to learn more about the cancer center visit www.camcfoundation.org.
Reach Megan Workman at megan.work...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5113.