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Jefferson, NC 28640

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Headshot of female physician Dr. Ayla Kessler
Headshot of female physician Dr. Ayla Kessler

Ashe Memorial Hospital welcomes new oncologist

JEFFERSON, N.C. — Ashe Memorial Hospital is pleased to welcome Dr. Ayla Kessler, a board-certified oncologist, to the team at Ashe Oncology and Hematology.

Dr. Kessler brings more than 10 years of experience in medical oncology, specializing in the treatment of breast and genitourinary cancer.

“I look forward to being a part of the inspirational team at Ashe Memorial Hospital and all the great things we will accomplish together,” Dr. Kessler said. “I envision building a cancer program where the best and most compassionate care can be delivered close to home.”

A native of Egypt, Dr. Kessler earned her medical degree from the University of Mansoura Faculty of Medicine in Mansoura City, Egypt, in 2005. She completed her Residency in Internal Medicine at Indiana University Health at Ball Memorial Hospital, in Muncie, Ind., in 2010. Dr. Kessler then went on to complete a Medical Oncology Fellowship at Roswell Park Cancer Institute, in Buffalo, N.Y., in 2012.

Prior to joining the team at Ashe Oncology and Hematology, Dr. Kessler spent three years working as a lead oncologist for Mercy Health at St. Elizabeth-Youngstown Hospital and St. Joseph Warren Hospital, in Youngstown, Ohio. She then went on to work as a medical oncologist for Novant Health Cancer Specialists in Charlotte where she was the Greater Charlotte Market Principal Investigator on breast cancer related clinical trials. Most recently, Dr. Kessler was the Medical Director and Cancer Committee Chair for University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center – Salem Regional Medical Center, in Salem, Ohio, where she was a member of the Breast Disease Team and spearheaded efforts that led to first-time Commission on Cancer (CoC) accreditation.

Located on the campus of Ashe Memorial Hospital, Ashe Oncology and Hematology is committed to delivering accurate diagnoses and treatment options, ensuring its patients are receiving the best possible care. In addition to providing chemotherapy, the Jo Anne Poe Cancer Center is a full-service infusion center.

In her role, Dr. Kessler will work alongside her patients and their families in a patient-centric model with the goal of achieving their priorities in life. Drawing on her previous experience, Dr. Kessler hopes to bring CoC accreditation, standardization and quality assurance of care and clinical trial opportunities to Ashe Oncology and Hematology. In addition to focusing on breast and genitourinary cancers, Dr. Kessler also has an interest in lung and gastrointestinal cancers.

“We will strive to ensure health care in our cancer center is delivered at the highest quality, in an evidence-based manner, including access to research and clinical trials,” Dr. Kessler said. “I’ve headed similar community cancer programs in my prior positions and spearheaded the CoC accreditation efforts. We created a clinical trials unit and helped keep many patients’ care local over the years.”

Ashe Oncology and Hematology is open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. For more information on Dr. Kessler or to schedule an appointment, please call 336-846-0826 or visit

About Ashe Memorial Hospital
For more than 80 years, Ashe Memorial Hospital’s dedicated team of board certified physicians, nurses and staff members have provided the highest quality medical care available to the people of Ashe County and the surrounding Blue Ridge Mountains. Ashe Memorial Hospital offers a wide variety of emergency, elective, rehabilitation and preventative health services.

Founded in 1941, Ashe Memorial Hospital is a fully accredited 25 bed critical hospital located in Jefferson, N.C. For more information, please visit or call 336-846-7101.