Cancer patients living in the south can now avail of some of the most technologically advanced treatments closer to home thanks to a new €77m cancer care centre in Cork.
Patients from the region, who previously had to travel to Dublin for some of the more advanced treatments, can now avail of rapid screening, timely diagnosis and a range of hi-tech medical, surgical and radiation oncology services under one roof at the Bon Secours Cork Cancer Centre.
Work began on the major construction project in October 2017 and the new centre has been operational for several months.
But has now been officially opened by Minister of State at the Department of Health, Jim Daly.
Among the new radiotherapy services now available is Stereotactic Radiosurgery - a non-surgical radiation therapy that uses concentrated radiation beams in high doses to destroy tumours in hard-to-reach areas of the body.
The centre also features a state-of-the-art oncology department and an innovative onsite pharmacy compounding unit where specifically tailored chemotherapy treatments can be prepared for individual patients. The centre has facilitated the creation of 50 new jobs.
Harry Canning, hospital manager at the Bon Secours Hospital Cork, described it as a huge milestone for healthcare in Munster:
These advanced cancer services have been complemented by a wider expansion of our healthcare services, which we are delighted to say are covered by all major medical health insurers in the Irish market.
The advanced hi-tech radiotherapy services are being provided through a partnership between the hospital and UPMC Hillman Cancer Centre, part of US-based academic medical centre UPMC which is affiliated with the University of Pittsburgh.
Charles Bogosta, president of UPMC International and UPMC Hillman Cancer Centre, said UPMC has for more than a decade, been increasing access to scientifically proven cancer treatments in Ireland: “This latest partnership with Bon Secours Cork underscores our commitment to providing the best possible care to patients close to home."
The investment in the cancer centre is part of a wider €150m investment in the Bon Secours Health System which has delivered 81 private rooms, four new operating theatres, a new 23-bed day infusion ward and a new critical care unit at the Bon Secours’s Cork campus.
Mr Canning said: “This will enable Bon Secours Cork meet our ever-increasing demand for existing services and give us the capacity to bring new services on board in the future.”