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Radiation Medicine and Technology: Cancer Care in Jordan

18 May 2017
The  KHCC is a leading cancer center in the Middle East and the IAEA has provided assistance and training to support its work. The support includes the establishment of supervised, structured clinical training programmes in radiation oncology, medical physics, and support through expertise, fellowships, training courses and exchange of information.“The cure rate among cancer patients is strongly dependent on the stage of the disease at the time of its diagnosis, so early detection remains key," says Akram N. Al-Ibraheem, Chairman of  Nuclear Medicine Department at  KHCC.At the KHCC laboratory, which supports the work of the Nuclear Medicine Department, a technician is analyzing cell samples.A lab technician prepares sample slides for analysis at the KHCC laboratory, which helps to assess if a patient requires radiation diagnosis and treatment.A medical staff  studies the images of a patient using the diagnostic imaging technique — PET-CT (Positron Emission Tomography-Computed Tomography) at the KHCC. The IAEA has supported the purchase of diagnostic equipment, including the installation of  new generation SPECT-CT (Single photon emission computed tomography) equipment expected by the end of 2017.Early diagnosis and treatment is key to cancer control. The KHCC’s diagnostic equipment includes PET-CT as well as SPECT to track and identify this dreadful disease.Techniques and technologies of radiation medicine — which include the disciplines of nuclear medicine, diagnostic radiology and radiotherapy — offer effective means to combat cancer. Training provided to radiologists, radiotherapists, and medical physicists has contributed to a high calibre of staff on-call for cancer care.Specific ‘controlled rooms' are always ready for patients who have undergone radionuclide therapy.Young Bilasan, recovering from cancer will soon be ready to go home. The KHCC provides adult and paediatric patients with advanced comprehensive cancer care. 4000 to 5000 new cancer cases are diagnosed each year."I am recovering well after the treatment I got here. I also want to become a doctor to help people suffering from cancer," says Zeyad.  A multidisciplinary approach is offered to patients. Decisions are taken by a full team of physicians based on detailed study of each case individually.Recovering patients and their families also play an important role in spreading the word on how radiation medicine and technology helps to combat cancer. The KHCC has a proactive outreach programme to spread the word that  'early detection is key to cancer treatment’.Having advanced medical equipment on its own is not enough: equally vital is providing necessary training to medical personnel. As part of its efforts to ensure high quality medical staff, the KHCC has a dedicated training centre that supervises and offers education and training on different disciplines including radiation medicine.A group of KHCC medical staff. The training offered to KHCC staff includes a fully comprehensive oncology nursing education programme, which provides detailed guidelines and procedures on the safe use of nuclear medicine and diagnostic equipment.The newly extended KHCC building will be ready this year to receive cancer patients using state-of-the-art technology for cancer diagnosis and treatment.To enhance cancer care programme in Jordan, the 2015 Practical Arrangements signed between the KHCC and IAEA included three primary areas of collaboration: direct training of nuclear medicine professional, organization of meetings and workshops on clinical practices, and development of the IAEA Curricula for Nuclear Medicine Professionals, a state-of-the-art training programme which aims to improve, broaden and continuously update the knowledge of nuclear medicine professionals around the world.

The KHCC also pays important attention to safety issues as regards radiation medicine and technology. The Center aims to ensure maximal benefits and minimal risks which are essential in this field. Attention to all aspects of radiation safety, adequate dosimetry and quality assurance procedures based on international standards is part and parcel of the KHCC goals implemented.

The King Hussein Cancer Center (KHCC) in Jordan provides comprehensive cancer care for all types of cancer; in both adult and pediatric patients. The IAEA has supported the KHCC to establish training programmes in nuclear medicine and diagnosis. IAEA expert visits have helped to assess and improve Jordan’s cancer control capacity and needs.

Last update: 15 February 2018

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