- $31.94m to improve patient access to radiopharmaceuticals used in cancer diagnosis
- A second Cyclotron machine will allow more patients with cancer, neurological, heart and other conditions to be diagnosed and monitored
- The project is expected to be completed in the next 12 months
Work has commenced on the $31.94 million Radiopharmaceutical Production and Development (RAPID) Laboratories and Cyclotron Project at QEII Medical Centre (QEIIMC).
The project includes the establishment of state-of-the-art laboratories as well as a second cyclotron machine to improve the supply of radiopharmaceutical products for patients and medical research in Western Australia.
Positron Emission Tomography (PET) radiopharmaceuticals are administered to patients with cancer, neurological, heart and other conditions for PET imaging, which is critical to both diagnose and stage cancers, as well as to monitor treatment response and disease progression.
Advances in medical science as well as clinicians being able to better diagnose and map cancers, combined with a growing population, has meant the demand for radiopharmaceuticals used in cancer diagnosis has significantly increased in WA.
WA provides approximately 29,000 doses of PET radiopharmaceuticals annually, which is twice the amount required five years ago. They also have an extremely short shelf life, so it is not feasible to source more than a certain amount from outside WA.
The QEIIMC site was chosen due to having the highest concentration of PET cameras, making it an ideal location for the State-wide distribution of these time-critical products.
This second Cyclotron and new laboratories will also be co-located with the existing Cyclotron and laboratories.
The Cyclotron is only one component of the RAPID Laboratory at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital (SCGH), however it is the most critical component.
There is currently no other machine of its type in WA and it supplies both public and private PET imaging scanners.
The state-of-the-art laboratory facilities and Cyclotron are forecasted to be operational in mid-2023.
Comments attributed to Health Minister Amber-Jade Sanderson:
"The current Cyclotron and associated laboratories at SCGH are some of the busiest facilities in Australia and having a second machine will more than double the output each year.
"Some of our most vulnerable patients such as those with cancer, neurological and heart conditions will greatly benefit from this new machine.
"Positron Emission Tomography imaging is critical to both diagnose and stage cancers, as well as to monitor treatment response and disease progression."
Minister's office - 6552 5900