The most critical issue facing New Zealand is our ability to treat cancer patients.
The Institute plans to raise $7million to purchase two linear accelerators increasing treatment options for cancer patients in Canterbury by 67% and across the South Island by 33%. Linear accelerators provide life-saving radiation treatment. Currently only six linear accelerators exist in the South Island.
With the purchase of the accelerators, South Island cancer patients will no longer have to wait up to eight weeks or fly to Australia for treatment. Radiation will be available within days of diagnosis. With greater capacity, patients will also receive the optimal number of treatments based on international best practice.
The Trustees of the St George’s Cancer Institute are:
Cilla Glasson, Director (Chair) and (Chair of Fundraising Committee)
Chris Atkinson, Director and Oncologist
Rob Black, Director
Christopher Weir, Director
Chris Wynne, Director and Oncologist
Tony Young, Director
Initially all funds raised will go towards the purchase of two Elekta Synergy linear accelerators. These machines offer the most up-to-date radiation therapy. Other linear accelerators in use around the South Island are starting to age and don’t offer recent technological advances.
The accelerators will be used in tandem with specialist cancer treatment software. Combining these technologies delivers the utmost precision and accuracy in radiation treatment ensuring the highest level of care for patients.
The equipment will be leased to the St George’s Cancer Care Centre through a commercial agreement creating a funding stream for the Institute.
Revenue earned will be used to support a range of cancer-related activities such as South Island cancer research, psychosocial support for patients and their families, and subsidised treatment and financial assistance for patients, all under the umbrella of the St George’s Cancer Institute.
Our initial target was $7.0 million and to date we have raised in excess of $5.0 million. In these trying economic times, particularly for the people of Canterbury, fundraising has been slower, however our aim is to reach our goal in 2012.
To make a donation or for more information please contact:
St George’s Cancer Institute
C/- St George’s Hospital
Private Bag 4737
phone: 0-3-355 9087
The Institute’s machines will be the latest available worldwide and able to optimally treat a range of cancers.
• Breast, lung, colorectal, head and neck, prostate, musculoskeletal, lymphoma, skin (melanoma), brain and other cancers can all be treated.
• Prostrate cancers, head and neck cancers and secondary brain tumours are cancers that we will treat with techniques not currently available in Canterbury.
• Many patients will be treated with Intensity Modulated Radiation Treatments (IMRT) - which means higher doses to difficult body sites can be managed more safely limiting collateral damage to other body organs. • Patients won’t have to travel to the North Island and/or Australia for these specific treatments as they do currently.
Cancer treatments should include psychological and social support. At present psychological support is difficult to access in the District Health Board environment. Many patients are concerned that any diagnosis of cancer will be terminal.
• Psychological programmes to support patients and their families during the cancer journey will be an integral part of treatment and will be provided free to patients and families in need.
• Financial assistance will be available for families who are suffering hardship by virtue of a family member incapacitated during treatment.
• The Institute will also fund a volunteer network to assist patients and families of patients with day to day needs.
Cancer research is an integral part of cancer treatment. The high tech software associated with the two linear accelerators and the chemotherapy delivery will be the most advanced in New Zealand. The St George’s Cancer Care Centre will be entirely computer based – a first in New Zealand for an Oncology service. Because of this the research potential is huge, as data on specific treatment patterns and results can be easily accessed, collated and analysed.
i effective supportive care
ii role of early support vs. on demand counselling
B Effective treatment evaluation of new technology
a intensity modulated radiation therapy
b integrating brachytherapy and external beam treatment
c VMAT efficiency evaluation, improving cure and lowering toxicity
C Clinical trials
a use of new medicines
b participation in new treatment technique studies
c evaluate cost effectiveness of cancer treatments