LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Kentucky has one of the highest rates of cancer in the entire United States. More than 4,200 people are diagnosed with the disease each year in the Louisville area. 

That's why Norton Healthcare is investing $38 million to build a new cancer center in Louisville's east end to save more lives. Construction is underway on a new Norton Cancer Institute off of Brownsboro Road. 

On Wednesday morning, Norton Healthcare leaders announced the plans for the comprehensive cancer center. Those leaders say this new cancer center will help address the need for care. 

"As everyone knows, cancer is the enemy," Norton Healthcare President/CEO Russell Cox said. "And unfortunately in Kentucky, we're one of those states that ranks in the bottom of how we're dealing with cancer. We feel like today is another step that Norton Healthcare has taken for the community to begin to win that battle."

Barbara Tafel is a survivor. She was diagnosed with breast cancer almost eight years ago. She credits the doctors and staff at Norton for saving her life.

"I feel very grateful to be on the other side of it, it's given my whole life a different perspective," Tafel said.

She was part of a group of survivors who left hand prints and messages in a cement "N" that will be used in the landscaping in the new building. 

"I said from this ground shall come hope and healing and I think to have a building that's dedicated to that is a incredible plus for our community," She said. 

Norton doctors say advanced technology and innovative design sets the institute apart. It's being built in a bustling area of Louisville's East End, right next to Norton Brownsboro Hospital. 

"We've got the service of the hospital, we've got a growing community, we've got medical officer buildings here, the growth patterns certainly indicate that there's going to be more population here," Cox said. 

The Norton Cancer Institute - Brownsboro should open in October of 2018.

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