692 Maltese patients sent to UK this year for specialised medical treatments
692 Maltese patients this year were referred by local professionals to go to various specialised renowned English hospitals to receive medical treatment. The Malta Independent has learnt that these 692 Maltese patients vary from new cases to follow up appointments with their doctors.
During her official visit in London President Coleiro Preca, visited two cancer care specialised hospitals: the Royal Marsden Hospital in Chelsea and the University College Hospital.
At the Royal Marsden this year six Maltese women were treated for cervical cancer and nine other for different types of cancer. Dr Alexandra Taylor, a consultant in Clinical Oncology who specialises in gynaecological cancer and her team have been for a number of years treating Maltese women who need brachytherapy. This is a type of therapy were radioactive material is directly given into the effective area.
Dr Taylor said that the treatment is painless, has minimal side effects and the success rate is that of 70% which is very good. She added that the female patient will only spend a total of two days in hospital and can go back home and will be followed up by the Maltese gynaecologists.
In this hospital Maltese patients are also sent for other types of cancer care in various parts of the body. The hospital showed the President a brand new machine called Linear Accelerator, which gives effective radiotherapy in lesser time. The maximum time a patient stays on this machine is that of two minutes. The cost of this piece of machinery is £1.8 million.
The University College Hospital specialises in urology problems, such as prostate and bladder cancer and other illnesses related to the lower part of the body. This year around 40 Maltese patients received treatment for prostate cancer and at the moment a Maltese male patient is there and was visited by the President. She was shown a new piece of equipment called Da Vinci Robot. This robot that costs £1.7million, helps the surgeon to study the inside of a body in a nonintrusive way. This will help the patient lose less blood and recover faster.
At the moment at University College around 10 Maltese medical professions are working or receiving training. This newsroom has learnt that the majority of the urologists in Mater Dei had received training from this hospital.
Rachel Busuttil Leaver, who is a urology nurse, has been working in this hospital for the past 27years. She said that because of the nature of her work she gets in contact with some of the Maltese patients that come for treatment. Even though she left Malta 30 years ago she will definitely retire as Malta is her home. Mary Rose Falzon is a pathologist of the breast and lung cancer. Dr Falzon has been working in this hospital since 1978. Dr Elaine Borg is another Maltese pathologist who has joined Dr Falzon two years ago.
The President thanked the medical staff of both hospitals for the love and dedication they show to the Maltese patients She made a donation by the Malta Community Chest Fund Foundation to these hospitals to continue their research in their respective fields.
At the moment at University College around 10 Maltese medical professions are working or receiving training.