Shropshire Star

Hospital trust building bunker for vital cancer treatment machine

A hospital is building a bunker for a new machine which is vital for the treatment of county cancer patients.

Nicola Wolstenholme, Ugne Valuntukeviciute and Francesca Eden in front ofan existing LINAC.

Shrewsbury & Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH) has confirmed the bunker will provide a location for a new 'linear accelerator'.

The linear accelerator (also known as a LINAC) will be a replacement for a current machine, which is soon to be decommissioned.

It is a vital component in the treatment of cancer patients and delivers high-energy X-rays or electrons, precisely to the tumour.

SaTH, which runs the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital (RSH) and the Princess Royal Hospital (PRH) in Telford, said the new machine would "improving patients' access to treatment", adding that it will ensure"the patient’s appointment to treatment times are all connected and that they will receive the right care at the right time".

The trust said the project will mean that "demand can be met", and that "patients receive timely services without facing delays or disruption".

The bunker is currently being built at RSH and the work is expected to be completed by the end of this year, with a replacement LINAC being installed by early 2025.

Dr Rick Sims, Consultant Clinical Scientist, said: “Radiotherapy encompasses a wide range of cancer treatments, including prostate, breast, colorectal, head and neck, lung, and gynaecological cancers. The new LINAC means that we can maintain efficiency and ensure continuity of care for patients’ needs and minimise disruptions, in addition to further developing and introducing advanced treatment techniques.”

Dr John Jones, Director of Medicine for the Trust, said: “The investment in the new LINAC and bunker means we can maintain and enhance capacity so we can provide high quality care to our patients in a timely way. Our oldest LINAC is reaching its 10-year shelf life, and we need to ensure uninterrupted treatment services.

“We remain committed to advancing cancer care and ensuring that patients receive the highest standard of treatment. This new LINAC facility underscores this commitment.”

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