Cancer patients in Hawke’s Bay and Taranaki will for the first time have access locally to radiation treatment without having to travel to larger centres.
The Government has made a decision to fund the replacement of 12 Linear Accelerators (LINAC) machines over the next three years.
“Radiation is an effective form of cancer treatment, and we know one in two people with cancer would benefit from its use. In New Zealand only one in three are currently accessing these services.
“The new LINACs will help to address this, by providing radiation treatment in more regions than ever before, improving access to treatment and reducing travel times” says Deputy Director-General Population Health and Prevention, Deborah Woodley.
New LINACs will be installed this year at Auckland, Canterbury, Capital and Coast and MidCentral DHBs (2 machines). MidCentral is intending to locate a replacement LINAC in Hawkes Bay in 2020/21 and Taranaki the following year.
Auckland and Northland DHBs are looking to put a machine in Northland in future.
The new LINAC machines provide more precise treatment, reducing negative effects such as damage to surrounding tissue, supporting faster recovery time.