Cancer has been the bane of our society for the longest time to a point where we all know someone who has either been affected or afflicted by it. My earliest interaction with this disease is when as a child, my favorite auntie became a victim of breast cancer at her prime. To say that I was devastated would be an understatement.
Over the years, more and more people have become affected by this deadly disease. At some point, people used to think that it only affected adults but nowadays we are also seeing babies getting it. As a matter of fact, a report by the International Agency For Research on Cancer indicates that in 2020, there were 42,116 new cancer cases in the country, 27,092 deaths and 82,620 prevalent cases over a five year period.
With this high number of prevalent cases, one would think that the powers that be would treat this disease with the seriousness that it needs but here we are. This is why I delighted to learn that HCG CCK Cancer Centre had launched a Elekta Versa HD System. It an advanced linear accelerator system designed to treat a broader spectrum of cancers while at the same time significantly enhancing patient care.
The Elekta Versa HD System is the first in Sub-Saharan Africa and promises to revolutionize how cancer is treated Kenya and the region at large. For starters, doctors will now be able to use the system’s imaging capabilities to precisely target and manage tumors located in critical areas. In the past, lack of precise targeting has seen organs located near the tumors get affected by the radiation which has even led to the demise of some patients.
The Elekta Versa HD will reduce the overall patient treatment duration from 5 to 7 weeks currently for standard treatments to a maximum of one week. This will have an effect of lowering non-therapeutic doses to protect organs at risk and potentially reduce the risk of secondary cancer. This will essentially go a long way in improving the quality of life of oncology patients who have do deal with side effects of the cancer treatment.
With the machine, the center will be able to deliver conventional therapies for treating a wide range of solid tumors, as well as high-precision, targeted therapies for treating complex cancers.
For the longest time, patients have been traveling overseas to receive this kind of specialized treatment. However, with the Elekta Versa HD System , this will be a thing of the past.
Another advantage of the Elektra Versa HD is that it will be able to treat up to 150 patients a day. This will go a long way in ensuring that those in need are able to get treatment. To make it affordable to the majority of Kenyans, the center has partnered with the NHIF scheme which will see it paying up 36% of the total cost of treatment.
It is my hope that the County Governments will start working with the HCG CCK Cancer Centre in a bid to avail this life changing technology to the masses. I believe that this would go a long way in slaying this monster that has been ravaging our society for far too long!!