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Radiation oncology facility construction underway

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Crown funding has been approved to build a radiation oncology facility at Whangarei Hospital. The new facility will expand the Jim Carney Cancer Treatment Centre (JCCTC).

It will include one Linear Accelerator (LINAC), two bunkers (one for future growth), a CT scanner and an expansion of the existing JCCTC facility.

"The development of a Radiation Oncology facility in Northland will address several significant issues for the regional service," offered chief executive, Dr Nick Chamberlain.

"Demand for radiotherapy has exceeded the capacity provided by the six LINAC machines within the region since 2017, which are all currently located at Auckland Hospital."

Northland-domiciled patients account for approximately one LINAC of the regional demand, so establishing a facility in Northland will significantly improve access to radiotherapy for Northlanders and increase overall regional capacity.

"Outpatient Cancer and Blood Services and most chemotherapy treatments at Whangarei Hospital are currently delivered in the JCCTC, a standalone building across the road from the main hospital block," Dr Chamberlain said.

"A large proportion of Northland patients who now receive either radiotherapy or combined radiotherapy-chemotherapy treatment at Auckland Hospital would receive this treatment in Whangarei, so demand for chemotherapy will immediately increase."

Therefore, the Crown funding includes expanding the JCCTC to allow for the additional demand and support space for growing cancer treatment requirements.

Construction is estimated to be complete in 2025.

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