Saskatchewan’s first PET/CT scanner officially opened today at Saskatoon’s Royal University Hospital.
“The investment we have made in this state-of-the-art medical imaging service will pay off in better health for our people, increased convenience and less stress from out-of-province travel, and better access to accurate diagnoses,” Rural and Remote Health Minister Randy Weekes said. “We owe it to our patients to provide the highest quality care and the most effective treatments.”
PET/CT (positron emission tomography-computed tomography) scans are used mainly to determine the treatment required for cancer patients and monitor its effectiveness. Saskatoon Health Region expects to provide service to 1,200 patients from across the province this fiscal year and 1,900 patients annually after that.
The Government of Saskatchewan provided Saskatoon Health Region with $4 million toward the new medical imaging technology. The Royal University Hospital Foundation raised the remaining $2 million required to renovate the space and install the PET/CT, plus $500,000 for research and education. The province is also providing up to $3.7 million in annual operating funding for the PET/CT.
The new PotashCorp PET/CT Centre was made possible by a matching contribution of $1 million from PotashCorp, making this vital piece of technology available to Saskatchewan residents.
“At PotashCorp, health care is a key community investment priority and has been throughout our history,” PotashCorp President and CEO Bill Doyle said. “We are very pleased that our partnership with Royal University Hospital continues to bring modern medical technology to our province and improve patient care for everyone who calls Saskatchewan home.”
The University of Saskatchewan cyclotron is expected to be in place by 2015, and to begin producing medical isotopes for the PET/CT by 2016. The University of Saskatchewan cyclotron is expected to be in place by 2015, and to begin producing medical isotopes for the PET/CT by 2016.