SU-E-E-03: Developing Solutions to Critical Radiation Oncology Challenges in Tanzania

Authors


Abstract

Purpose:

Develop solutions to critical medical physics challenges in Tanzania.

Methods:

In September of 2013 we began working with Jumaa Bin Dachi, a Therapy Physicist at the Ocean Road Cancer Institute in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. We developed a bi-lateral learning partnership over the course of eight qualitative Skype meetings with Jumaa. From these meetings we have ascertained that there is a gap between the installation of new equipment and treating patients. This gap has often been overlooked by international partners attempting to improve radiation therapy access. Relationships with academic institutions abroad can fill these gaps, and lead to sustained care of patients needing radiation.

Results:

Our efforts are best given in a supporting role to help develop solutions and new technology that can reduce the burden on the Medical Physicist. Solutions may include: training material, support for radiation therapy classes, development of appropriate local protocols, and peer-review on documents being produced. New technology needs to focus around simple and easy field shaping, improved patient imaging systems, and systems for patient set-up. We believe our work can help alleviate some of the burdens faced by this institute.

Conclusion:

While we are just in the beginning stage of this partnership, we believe there is great potential for success between both parties. We hope that the Ocean Road Cancer Institute will benefit from potential funding and resources by partnering with a High Income Country to develop affordable solutions to clinical problems in Tanzania.

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