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Accessibility of radiotherapy in 16 asian countries: current update on the existing scenario

Jun 23, 2017, 10:40 AM
Poster Global Cancer Challenges and Role of RT Friday morning - Poster Presentations - Screen2


Angela Gaerlan (St. Luke's Medical Center, Bonifacio Global City)


**Introduction of the Study:** Despite being home to about 60% of the world’s population, an estimate of only 27% of the world’s radiotherapy facilities are found in Asia. Radiotherapy is an essential part of the treatment of cancer. It is estimated that for every 1,000 new cancer patients, about 60% should receive radiotherapy as part of their treatment, out of which 23% would require a second course. Radiotherapy for cure or palliation has been shown to be cost effective. Many countries in Asia have limited access to radiotherapy, while there are some countries with no service at all. **Methodology:** A survey was conducted among 16 Asian countries in September of 2016. The responder was either a radiation oncologist or a medical physicist. They were asked questions pertaining to the current radiotherapy setup in their respective country. The following data were collected: (1) number of megavoltage machines (cobalt or linear accelerator) (2) number of existing radiotherapy personnel (radiation oncologist, medical physicist and radiation technologist) and (3) current healthcare payment system specifically for radiotherapy. **Result:** In this survey, in 16 countries with available data, 1,011 megavoltage machines (cobalt or linear accelerator) were available for an estimated demand of nearly 2,300 machines. These countries have difficulty in meeting the staff requirements for a radiotherapy clinic as well, with a shortfall in radiation oncologists, medical physicists and radiation technologists. Also many of these countries do not have local health insurance supported by the government and patients pay mainly out-of-pocket. **Conclusion:** Strategies for the development of radiotherapy services and substantial investment for staffing, training and equipment are still needed for many of these countries in Asia.
Country Philippines
Institution St. Luke's Medical Center, Bonifacio Global City

Primary author

Angela Gaerlan (St. Luke's Medical Center, Bonifacio Global City)


Miriam Calaguas (St. Luke's Medical Center, Bonifacio Global City)

Presentation materials