Technology breakthrough for Welsh cancer centre

UK’s first proton beam therapy centre to boast world's-first and only digital PET/CT system

The centre in Gwent will be the first in the world to offer truly-digital PET scanning

Equipment installed at the UK’s first proton beam therapy centre will provide cancer patients with the most-advanced cancer technology available.

Proton Partners International will bring the world’s-first and only digital PET CT system to the UK’s first proton beam therapy centre in Newport, Gwent, which is expected to be operational by 2017.

Philips’ Vereos PET CT is the first commercially-available scanner to offer truly-digital PET, significantly improving the visual quality and quantitative accuracy of PET imaging. At the heart of Vereos is a state-of-the-art detector that converts detected photons directly into digital information.

Vereos is designed to improve current clinical practice, as well as broaden the range of imaging techniques that are currently limited by the performance of conventional analogue PET CT systems.

Mike Moran, chief executive of Proton Partners International, said: “This digital PET CT scanner will be the first of its kind in the UK and reflects the strength of our commitment to improving the treatment of cancer.

“Currently there is only one PET CT scanner in Wales, but it’s not digital. The accuracy of this new PET CT system means that we will be able to produce much-clearer imagery to support early diagnosis and determine which patients are responding better to treatment with follow-up scans. This means that our patients will receive a better and more-sophisticated level of care.

“Our centres will not only provide imaging, radiotherapy, chemotherapy and proton therapy, but they will also be a hub to drive improvements in cancer treatment in the UK.”

Neil Mesher, managing director of health systems at Philips UK and Ireland, added: “We are delighted to be working with Proton Partners to bring the first Vereos system to the UK.

This breakthrough innovation combines exceptional quality and accuracy in imaging at low dose rates helping clinicians get answers first time around enabling them to make more-confident diagnoses for patients.”

Philips has also been appointed to deliver software and technology tools in the three centres to be opened by Proton Partners, including Philips' Pinnacle Treatment Planning, which delivers an intuitive planning environment that simplifies workflow. Other leading global partners include Ion Beam Applications (IBA) and Elekta.

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