The government of the Principality has recently invested 11 Million EUR in the purchase of two linear particle accelerators for the radiotherapy department of the Princess Grace Hospital in Monaco. These machines are a radiosurgery treatment system that allows clinicians to target tumors in difficult or hard to reach areas.
These “TrueBeam STx with Novalis Radiosurgery” are unique in the PACA region. “There are only two or three in France,” (The closest other TrueBeam can be found in Montpellier) said Stephane Valeri, The Minister of Social Affairs and Health of Monaco. “It’s like upgrading from a small city car to a Ferrari,” says Cécile Ortholan, head of the radiotherapy department. “We can treat tumors and cancers with greater precision. We treat 400 patients per year in Monaco.”
20% of the patients are Monegasque residents, the other patients being from the Alpes-Maritimes. Monaco is limited in the origin of the French patients they can accept. Only those from the Alpes-Maritimes can be treated and benefit from help of the French Social Security. The arrival of the 2 machines is not necessarily to attract more patients to the hospital, but rather to be able to treat more pathologies, and improve the work of the whole department. A medical tool that makes a big difference in the region.
HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco inaugurated this great piece of technology last Monday. It took Cécile Ortholan and Benjamin Serrano (who heads a team of 5 physicians) 4 months to set up and calibrate this machine which weighs in at 5 tonnes. The next TrueBeam will be delivered in a year.
With the arrival of the TrueBeam, the physicians will now be able to specialise in more types of tumors and cancers due to the fact that the precision of this machine, will allow them to actually work on treating more than the usual breast, prostate and lungs. This is a new era also in the treatment and research in brain cancer and how they can be treated.