CANCER patients will start receiving radiotherapy treatment next week as engineers are currently on the ground fixing the machines.
By Kudakwashe Pembere
All machines at Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals and Mpilo Hospital grounded over the past two months required repairs. Parirenyatwa public relations officer Mr Linos Dhire told HealthTimes the engineers are on the ground fixing the machines.
Engineers from South Africa are now on site and are already working and they are already working on the repairs. The spares were delivered at the hospital on the weekend,” he said.
The hospital hopes to resume radiotherapy treatment next week.
“We expect that all things being equal patients should start getting treatment next week,” he said.
Giving an update on the Mpilo Hospital where the Uninterrupted Power Supply machines were supposed to be installed, Chief Director for Curative Services in the Health and Child Care Ministry Dr Sydney Makarawu said the room housing the Uninterrupted Power Supply will be finished soon.
“The superstructure of the housing of the UPS at Mpilo Hospital has been built but we are now doing the roof. And the roof will be finished by next week.
“Once that is finished, then we will put the UPS, and radiotherapy machine at Mpilo. When they install the UPS, the power supply machine then the machine will start working,” he said.
Radiotherapy is the second-most successful method of curing cancer. It can be used alone or in combination with chemotherapy to cure and sometimes treat benign tumours.
The method has been known in some cases to effectively eliminate affected cells and is capable of shrinking the affected cells and minimising pain.
The latest breakdown of the machines prompted stakeholders to urge government to quickly intervene and rectify the situation.
About US$10 million was availed for the procurement of five radiotherapy machines from the Swiss based company Varien. With Parirenyatwa Hospital having three of these machines and Bulawayo’s Mpilo Hospital getting two, each machine required roughly about US$53 000 for repairs.