“There is a team coming that will be part of the Santa Cruz Nuclear Medicine Center, which is more than 90 percent complete,” Vice Minister of Communications Gabriela Alcón assured media representatives.
According to the head of the Vice Ministry attached to the Presidency’s portfolio, these advanced technological means will strengthen the treatment of oncological diseases in this hospital, the second of these features to be installed in Bolivia.
Alcón explained that the government is giving priority to the construction of this support facility, which is part of Bolivia’s network of centers for nuclear medicine, to combat oncological diseases in the country.
Pampa de la Isla patients have access to positron emission tomography (PET/CT) diagnostics, which uses small amounts of radiotracers, a special camera, and a computer to assess tissue and organ function through image analysis.
They also have access to linear accelerator radiation therapy and chemotherapy for clinical oncology patients.
Bolivia has allocated six state-of-the-art linear accelerators for cancer treatment to its network of nuclear medicine and radiotherapy centers in La Paz, El Alto and Santa Cruz, confirmed the Director of the Bolivian Nuclear Energy Agency (ABEN), Hortensia Jimenez.
Speaking to state broadcaster Bolivia TV, the policy said that this system of healthcare facilities also has what is known as Spect-CT imaging equipment for photon emission computed tomography.
He commented that such technologies facilitate the identification of changes at the cellular level, and thus the detection of diseases much earlier than other types of investigation.
According to the head of ABEN, the network includes high-dose-rate brachytherapy areas for patients with oncological diseases.
Jiménez described that, in addition to advanced tools during internships abroad, the Plurinational State has also trained and specialized personnel to integrate these multidisciplinary teams.
He indicated that among them were physicists, radiologists, physicians and technicians in nuclear medicine, imaging and radiation therapists, among other specialists.
The first support facility of this network was inaugurated last March in the city of El Alto; delivery of the second in Santa Cruz is expected next September, and the third in La Paz in early 2023.