Cancer care and treatment for patients in Niagara advanced last week with the installation of a new CT simulation machine that positions Niagara Health as a leader in radiotherapy imaging.
The machine, which replaces an older CT simulator in the Radiation Department of the Walker Family Cancer Centre (WFCC) at the St. Catharines Site, uses state-of-the-art detector technology and artificial intelligence (AI) to provide better-quality 3D and 4D imaging used in planning radiation treatment.
The more accurate, faster imaging provided by this industry-leading CT simulator will positively impact survival rates and quality of life by enabling the extraordinarily precise treatment of patients living with cancer, says Dr. Abhirami Hallock, Radiation Oncologist and Head of the Radiation Medicine Program.
The WFCC has been taking patient appointments on the new machine since it officially started being used on Monday, June 27.
“This is a big win for cancer patients in the Niagara region,” says Dr. George Hajdok, Niagara Health Head of Physics. “CT simulator images are an important input for radiation treatment planning. They allow for segmentation of individual target volumes and organs-at-risk, provide density information for 3D radiation dose calculation, and help to optimize custom radiation fields used to target cancer within the body.”
The CT simulator replacement is part of upgrades and renovations to Niagara Health’s Radiation Medicine division, supported by Cancer Care Ontario and the Ministry of Health and a $500,000 donation to the Niagara Health Foundation from The Henderson Family (Jeff and Lynn Henderson). They position Niagara Health as an early implementer of AI-based imaging.
“The project is a wonderful example of the core values here at Niagara Health,” says Tracy Fazzari, Director, Patient Care, Oncology and Palliative Care. “The team members were truly ‘Driven by Optimism.’ They rose to the challenge, optimized all resources and partnered both within the organization and regionally to lead the province in this innovative project. All of this effort and expertise also allowed the team to ‘Achieve Ambitious Results’. Everyone involved followed best practices, insisted on the highest standards of care and collaborated to ensure our patients will have an innovative healthcare experience at WFCC.”
For more information on the services offered at the WFCC, visit Niagara Health.