Ga-Rankuwa, Pretoria – As part of the Gauteng Department of Health’s (the “Department”) concerted efforts to boost service delivery and fast track the diagnosis of patients suffering from cancer, today, Gauteng MEC for Health Dr Gwen Ramokgopa launched an advanced oncology facility at the cost and investment of R36 million, at Dr George Mukhari Academic Hospital (GDMAH) in Ga- Rankuwa, Tshwane.
The Department and DGMAH in Ga-Rankuwa collaborated with Philips South Africa to bring advanced oncology care to patients with a new leading-edge oncology diagnostics facility that harnesses multiple technologies to provide high-quality data fast, and creates a comfortable and calming environment for patients to increase chances of a good quality life and positive treatment outcomes.
“I cannot contain my excitement with the launch of this much needed biomedical equipment because to us patient care and safety will always come first and today’s launch of the first of its kind PET-CT imaging system in Africa serves as a testimony of our unreserved commitment to improve patient care and the realisation of the Gauteng government’s agenda of Transformation, Modernisation and Re-industrialisation”, said MEC Ramokgopa.
The facility includes an advanced Philips Ingenuity TF PET/CT- a nuclear imaging technique that combines positron emission tomography (PET) and computed tomography (CT) to evaluate the structure and function of cells and body tissue. This advanced PET-CT solution ultimately offers a variety of patient-specific methods and tools to facilitate optimal management of both image quality and radiation dose – allowing practitioners to truly focus on each patient’s specific needs.
“The GDMAH serves a 1.7million population catchment area, which includes the Bojanala District in the North West Province and Limpopo Province. Therefore, I am optimistic that today’s launch will mark the beginning of an end of suffering to the majority of our cancer patients who used to be referred to Steve Biko Academic Hospital (SBAH) for appropriate PET-CT Scan diagnostics prior to specific treatment for their type of malignancy. This was less than ideal because the overloading of SBAH resulted in tremendously long queue delays which impacted negatively on effective patient management”, added the MEC.
“The system was installed in June 2017, and has already helped guide decision-making for early diagnosis and assessment of treatment efficacy for over 140 patients,” says Prof Trevor Mdaka, Head of Nuclear Medicine at the Department. “We are thrilled with the results and the level of care we are able to provide our people with world-class technology.”