New PET/CT scanner suite for cancer patients in Victoria
August 14, 2019
VICTORIA – The B.C. government has announced the new Gordon Heys Family PET/CT (positron emission tomography/computed tomography) scanner suite is open at the B.C. Cancer Centre in Victoria. In a news release, the province said the project cost $6.5 million and is the first publicly funded scanner outside of the Lower Mainland.
B.C. Premier John Horgan and Health Minister Adrian Dix (pictured) announced the new $6.5 million imaging system at the B.C. Cancer Centre in Victoria.
“Last year, more than 1,900 Island residents had to travel to Vancouver to receive their scans,” said Minister Dix in the statement.
The suite is named after Nanaimo resident Gordon Heys, who donated $2 million to the B.C. Cancer Foundation. The province said this donation is the largest private gift ever donated in support of B.C. Cancer in Victoria.
PET/CT scanners provide physicians with information about biological functioning and anatomy, and are used to identify cancers, among other diseases. The machines can also help evaluate the effectiveness of treatments by determining if a patient’s tumours have shrunk, spread or returned.
“Approximately half of British Columbians are expected to receive a cancer diagnosis in their lifetime, and timely, effective diagnostics are a critically important part of cancer care and treatment,” said Premier Horgan.
The government said the new PET/CT suite will increase capacity for diagnostic imaging on Vancouver Island, which builds on the province’s surgical and diagnostic imaging strategy.
Since launching the strategy last year, the government said over 10,000 more MRIs were delivered in the Vancouver Island Health Authority, an increase of 28.2 per cent from the previous year.
The government said this year’s budget also allocated an additional $105 million over three years to support cancer care services across B.C.
It said once the service is fully operational, the new PET/CT scanner is expected to provide over 2,200 scans per year.