Improving Cancer Care for London Area Patients
Government Supporting Wait Time Reductions and Radiation Therapy Machines
Cancer care continues to improve for London area patients, thanks to targeted initiatives being led by the South West Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) focused on reducing non-urgent cancer surgery wait times.
As of July, 95 per cent of non-urgent cancer surgeries are being performed within provincial access targets at London Health Sciences Centre. Non-urgent cancer surgery wait times at London Health Sciences Centre have decreased by 34 days since the fall of 2009, improving from a 109 day wait to 75 days today.
Across the South West LHIN, non-urgent cancer surgery wait times have also fallen dramatically since the fall of 2009, from 102 days to 56 days today.
In addition to helping reduce cancer wait times, the province is investing in two new state-of-the-art Varian TrueBeam linear accelerator radiation therapy machines to help improve cancer therapy in the London area.
These are among the most advanced of their kind and will replace older units at the hospital. The machines deliver radiation therapy more efficiently than previous-generation machines, resulting in reduced side effects, less time spent on a treatment bed, and better outcomes.
Reducing wait times and investing in proven, cutting-edge medical technologies is part of the Ontario government's Action Plan for Health Care and its commitment to provide the right care, at the right time, in the right place.
- As of this June, 96 per cent of patients at the London Regional Cancer Program received radiation treatment within 14 days of being ready to treat.
- London Health Sciences Centre has been using a TrueBeam linear accelerator to provide radiation therapy since November 2012. Today’s announcement means the hospital will have three machines by January 2014.
- Linear accelerators are used to deliver external-beam radiation treatment to cancer patients by focusing on cancer cells without damaging the surrounding healthy tissue.
“We want cancer patients to get the best possible care as close to home, and as quickly as possible. Today’s announcement further demonstrates our commitment to improve cancer care by reducing wait times and ensuring that the latest technology is available to patients, when and where they need it.”
“We know how important it is for our patients and their families to have access to safe and high-quality care, and equally importantly, to receive that care close to home. Ultimately this investment in new radiation therapy equipment will result in improved outcomes and provide better care for our cancer patients.”