News | January 31, 2011

U.K. Launches Initiative to Promote Radiotherapy

January 31, 2011 – An oncology systems provider has launched The Year of Radiotherapy, an initiative to raise awareness of radiotherapy as a cost-effective, cutting-edge treatment that can help cure cancer. Oncology Systems Limited (OSL) launched the program in response to data from Cancer Research UK.

According to figures published by Cancer Research UK, only one in 10 people know that radiotherapy helps cure 40 percent of cancer patients. A report from the national charity estimates that only 38 percent of cancer patients in England are getting radiotherapy, although research shows that up to 50 percent might benefit.

"We need to dispel the myths about radiotherapy and associated side effects and make people more aware of the benefits of the latest treatments,” said Julie Mead, clinical director of OSL. “But we also need to make sure that these treatments are available across the country. The U.K. lags behind America and Europe in introducing the new, more targeted radiotherapy technology that is available. Rather than update and reinvest in technology that's essentially been around for the last 40 or so years, it's time we made sure that every cancer patient in the U.K. has access to the best treatment."

"There's no doubt that our survival rates have risen and our treatment has improved almost beyond recognition,” said Sir Mike Richards, who launched OSL’s latest TomoTherapy installation at Nottingham City Hospital. “Our aim is to match the best in the world. With the TomoTherapy machine there will be treatments that people from the East Midlands and beyond will be able to access for the first time. I'm sure people from other trusts will come here to look for ideas for future treatment."

OSL is the U.K. and Ireland's exclusive distributor of the helical TomoTherapy treatment machine, which provides precise, targeted, image guided intensity modulated radiotherapy. There are more than 300 installations of the machine worldwide, but just six hospitals using the technology in the U.K.

For more information: www.osl.uk.com

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