ECHO Featured in CT Insider - ECHO Associates

A Beacon of Light on Your Cancer Care Journey


ECHO Featured in CT Insider

ECHO was pleased to be highlighted in the March 25 CT Insider. Dr. Kapur discusses how ECHO leads the way in delivering the highest quality care in a cost-effective and comprehensive manner. Read the article below:

When someone receives a cancer diagnosis, the last thing they should worry about is if they can readily access high-quality, comprehensive care in a location close to home. Eastern Connecticut Hematology and Oncology (ECHO) in Norwich provides just that — and at a fraction of the cost.

The practice was founded in 1985 by Dr. Dennis Slater, who came from Memorial Sloan Kettering to offer the community a different approach to cancer treatment. He was interested in advancing patients’ prognoses through clinical trials in a more local setting so they could avoid traveling to a more costly hospital or larger health care system.

“There was no form of leukemia management in southeast Connecticut prior to him,” Dr. Dinesh Kapur said of Slater. “We now have six doctors, seven APRNs, and our own research department that handles dozens of ongoing clinical trials on site.”

ECHO has been on forefront of next-generation sequencing testing to individualize treatments. Its practitioners administer infusions for all solid malignancies, and also provide cutting-edge bispecific antibodies to treat myeloma, leukemias, and lymphomas in its chemotherapy infusion center. Kapur said the staff is consistently educated on new therapies and treatment options to stay up to date on treating all forms of cancer.

Patients also have access to palliative care, alternative/holistic medicine modalities, acupuncture, massage therapy, psychotherapy, physical therapy, a social worker, and a nutritionist. There are even laboratory services and a medical dispensary on site. 

“Our patients appreciate that every aspect of their care is handled in one place,” Kapur said. “We want them to live as normal of a life as possible while undergoing treatments, so we facilitate a community environment where they know the providers and caregivers on a personal level.”

ECHO takes this concept of personalized care a step further by addressing the logistical and emotional needs of their patients, as well. Through its nonprofit the ECHO Foundation, the practice provides transportation to and from the facility, financial assistance, housing assistance, and emotional support, among other services.

And since ECHO is independently owned, patients don’t have to worry about costly facility fees. Data collected by The New England Journal of Medicine shows that cancer treatments cost three to four times more when carried out in a hospital setting, Kapur said.

By comparison, ECHO provides compassionate, cutting-edge care in patients’ communities at a third of the cost. The practice even works with pharmaceutical companies to bring down the costs of prescription drugs. 

“Some chemotherapies are extremely expensive, so depending on the patient’s prescription benefit we can tap into different foundations to make it more affordable,” Kapur said. “That doesn’t happen in large hospital systems.”

Kapur wants those dealing with a cancer diagnosis to know that they don’t have to go to a hospital-based practice to receive high-quality care — that they have a choice. 

“ECHO is cost-effective and value-based for employers, as well as the community at large,” he said. “We’re proud of the relationships that we build with our patients, and we’ll be here for you every step of the way.”

Eastern Connecticut Hematology and Oncology is located at 330 Washington St., Suite 220, in Norwich. For more information, call (860) 886-8362 or visit