MaryEllen Locher Breast Center Named a Breast Center of Excellence

Chattanooga, Tenn.– – The MaryEllen Locher Breast Center at Memorial has been named a Certified Quality Breast Center of Excellence, the top level certification designated by the National Consortium of Breast Centers.
Memorial is one of only 15 breast centers in the U.S. with this designation and the only one in Tennessee, Georgia and Alabama.
“We are honored and extremely proud to be certified as a Quality Center of Excellence by the National Consortium of Breast Centers,” said Kathy Dittmar, director of women’s and support services at Memorial. “This validates all the hard work and compassion that our multidisciplinary team gives each and every day to ensure our breast patients receive the best and most compassionate care available.”

The MaryEllen Locher Breast Center received the Certified Participant honor in 2009, the first level of certification, but in 2010 the facility reached the second level, Certified Quality Breast Center. The recent designation as a Certified Quality Breast Center of Excellence is valid through April 2012.

“This distinguished honor represents commitment by this breast center to provide the highest level of quality breast healthcare to patients in their community,” according to a spokesman from the National Consortium of Breast Centers. “A center’s staff must not only be familiar with existing standards of care, but must also be aware of new advances in technology. MaryEllen Locher Breast Center at Memorial Hospital actively ensures they provide the best possible quality care to breast patients in their community.”

The National Quality Measures for Breast Centers were developed by referencing the Health Care Advisory Board’s Clinical Quality Dash Board for breast centers, published in the fall of 2004. The National Quality Measures for Breast Centers reflect more than five years of work which has culminated in the adoption of more than 33 National Quality Indicators.


Memorial Health Care System is a not-for-profit, faith-based healthcare organization dedicated to the healing ministry of the Church. Founded by the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth and strengthened as part of Catholic Health Initiatives, it offers a continuum of care including preventative, primary and acute hospital care, as well as cancer and cardiac care, orthopedic and rehabilitation services. Memorial is a regional referral center of choice with 4,000 associates and more than 700 affiliated physicians providing health care throughout Southeast Tennessee and North Georgia. Memorial Health Care System is recognized as one of the nation’s 100 Top Hospitals® by Thomson Reuters, the health care industry’s leading source of information on hospital quality. To learn more, visit

The National Consortium of Breast Centers promotes excellence in breast health care for the general public through a network of diverse professionals dedicated to the active exchange of ideas and resources. It serves as an informational resource and provides support services to those rendering care for people with breast diseases through educational programs, newsletters, a national directory and patient forums. It encourages patients to concentrate and specialize in activities related to breast disease and encourages the development of programs and centers that address breast disease and promote breast health. It facilitates collaborative research opportunities on issues of breast health; and developed a set of core measures to define, improve and sustain quality standards in breast health care programs and for quality performance in all types of breast health care facilities. For more information, visit