Uganda Cancer Institute (UCI) will have more than one radiotherapy machine by the end of this year, the Executive Director, Dr. Jackson Orem has revealed. He says they hope to install a second radiotherapy machine once the construction of the banker by Roko Construction is completed.
More than 44,000 people from all over East Africa seek radiotherapy services at the institute. “With more than one machine, the institute will be able to treat more cancer patients,” he said. Currently, cancer patients are unable to access radiation therapy due to the breakdown of the old machine last year installed in 1995.
Dr. Orem says they will be able to treat patients beginning next month or even earlier. He however, says to avoid problems that followed the breakdown of the radiotherapy machine, government needs to invest in bio-technicians to service the machines.
“We had to wait for a team of people from abroad to come and assemble the machine. If we had our own people, we wouldn’t need that,” he said. Radiotherapy is the use of high-energy waves such as x-rays, gamma rays, or electron beams to destroy cancer cells in the body.
Radiation therapy can either be external or internal. As a treatment method for cancer, it can be used to treat lung, liver, breast, cervix, prostrate and eye.
Radiotherapy is one eight cancer treatments that are used in the world. Other treatments are; surgery, chemotherapy, immunotherapy, targeted therapy, hormone therapy, stem cell transplant and precision medicine.