Saskatoon hospital to acquire PET/CT
SASKATOON – A $17 million
government investment in an advanced research cyclotron will set the
stage for an additional $6 million investment to bring PET-CT (Positron
Emission Tomography-Computerized Tomography) scan services to
“The introduction of PET-CT treatment and research services is a very
positive step forward for patients in Saskatchewan,” Health Minister Don
“What this means for patients is they will no longer have to travel
outside of the province to receive this service. We owe it to our
patients to provide the highest quality care and the latest treatments,
as close to home as possible.”
PET scans provide clinical information that is not available from
diagnostic tests such as MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) exams or CT
scans. PET scans are used mainly during treatment of cancer patients to
determine the treatment required and monitor its effectiveness.
“The cyclotron will enable the production of the isotopes needed to
provide the PET-CT program to Saskatchewan patients,” Innovation
Minister Rob Norris said. “This is a critical partnership that marries
the science and technology of innovation with the real-time delivery of
The province is providing $4 million of the $6 million toward the
purchase, renovations and installation of the PET-CT scanner. The
Saskatoon Health Region’s Royal University Hospital Foundation has
committed to raise the remaining $2 million.
“Twenty years ago, we launched a campaign to bring the first MRI to
Saskatchewan, giving people in Saskatchewan access to the most advanced
diagnostic equipment and treatment right here at home,” Volunteer Board
Chair of Royal University Hospital Foundation Arnie Arnott said.
“We are proud to be a partner in bringing the newest technology of a
PET-CT medical imaging program to our province. This is a testament to
the power of our shared commitment through donor support in improving
the quality of life where we live and work.”
McMorris expressed gratitude to the Royal University Hospital Foundation
for its financial support for the project, and to the Saskatoon Health
Region for its commitment to provide the service.
When the scanner is fully operational, it will have the capacity to
provide about 2,000 scans per year. Saskatchewan patients who need a PET
scan are currently sent to Edmonton or Winnipeg for this service. The
province covers the cost of out-of-province PET scans.
Renovations and installation will begin in the 2011-12 fiscal year, and
the new PET-CT scanner is expected to be operational during 2012-13.
The $17 million investment for a cyclotron includes $10 million from the
Government of Saskatchewan and $7 million from the Government of Canada.
The research cyclotron will generate short-lived, radioactive PET-CT
isotopes, required to support the delivery of a new provincial PET-CT
medical imaging program. The cyclotron will also support research into
the direct production of Technetium-99, the most widely used medical
isotopes in the world.
Posted March 10, 2011