Open Accessibility Menu

Full-time Oncologist Melissa Cohen, MD, Joins St. John’s Health Cancer Care

Full-time Oncologist Melissa Cohen, MD, Joins St. John’s Health Cancer Care

St. John’s Health (SJH) is pleased to announce and welcome Teton County, WY’s first full-time oncologist, Melissa Cohen, MD.

Dr. Cohen, who brings more than 15 years of oncology experience, began seeing patients in Jackson last week as the area’s only full-time physician provider. Prior to joining the team at SJH, Dr. Cohen practiced at UCLA in Los Angeles, CA, where she taught at the David Geffen School of Medicine and practiced as a board-certified medical oncologist in Westlake Village and Porter Ranch.

With the arrival of Dr. Cohen, Teton County and surrounding areas have the distinct benefit of personalized, premier care from a full-time local cancer care staff, including an oncology physician and two longtime board-certified nurse practitioners, Kerry Carr and Beth Dannewald. A team of nurse navigators ensures that individualized care is coordinated for each patient.

SJH maintains an affiliate partnership with Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI) to continue to provide preeminent treatment associated with a world class cancer research center. Through the partnership with HCI and under the care of the local providers and staff, SJH is continuing to expand its oncological services to offer more resources to the community and to allow patients and their families to receive state- of- the- art treatment while remaining close to home.

SJH’s oncology program, which has seen a 50% increase in patient visits since 2018, wouldn’t have been possible without the hard work, dedication, and visionary contributions of Dr. John Ward, who is moving toward a much-deserved retirement. Dr. Ward first began seeing oncology patients at SJH in 2002. An event of celebration and gratitude will be scheduled this Fall. SJH is also extremely grateful for the other Huntsman visiting oncologists who have traveled to Jackson to support the needs of SJH patients, including Dr. Ben Solomon, Dr. Katie Kerrigan, and Dr. Christopher Nevala-Plagemann.

About Melissa Cohen, MD:
Melissa Cohen, MD is a board-certified Medical Oncologist with over 15 years of experience. She is an associate clinical professor at the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA). She received her medical degree at George Washington University in Washington DC. She completed her residency training at University of Colorado in Denver and her fellowship training in hematology, oncology and geriatrics at UCLA. Her practice includes breast, gastrointestinal, lung, gynecological, and urological cancers, as well as blood cancers such as chronic leukemias, lymphoma, multiple myeloma. At UCLA she worked as a sub-investigator on clinical trials for the development of novel cancer therapies in gastrointestinal and breast oncology. Involvement in clinical trials has allowed her to stay abreast of the latest cancer treatment options available to ensure that her patients have the most up-to-date therapies available to them. Melissa believes in a collaborative approach to caring for her patients. She regularly attends weekly cancer conferences where she presents and reviews cases with other cancer specialists including surgeons, radiation oncologists, pathologists, and radiologists. She is eager to help build the oncology program in collaboration with research efforts and resources at the Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah. Melissa and her husband grew up in Colorado. They have two daughters and are avid alpine enthusiasts, skiers and endurance athletes who are excited to be able to return to the mountain lifestyle in which they were raised.


Media Contact: Karen Connelly, Chief Communications Officer,