San Juan hospital receives life saving donation
The Amancio Ortega foundation delivers a new MRI and pledges two linear accelerators to the oncology department
By Shelley Liddell SAN JUAN public hospital has taken possession of its new magnetic resonance imaging machine, donated by philanthropist Amancio Ortega’s foundation.
Amancio Ortega is better known for being the head of department store empire Inditex, spearheaded by Zara, and including such well-known brands as Massimo Dutta, Pull and Bear and Stradivarius.
During 2017, Sr. Ortega’s foundation donated a whopping €320m to the public health service to be used to fight cancer by purchasing the latest generation medical diagnostic imaging equipment.
The 1.5 Testla high-field MRI machine for San Juan cost €720,000 and will enter into service once technicians have completed their training in how to use it.
The hospital already has another MRI; which for years, along with one at Dr Peset hospital in Valencia, were the only two of these machines available at public hospitals in the whole region.
Many of the new MRIs applications are for diagnosing tumours and evaluating their growth, explained head of diagnostic radiology Juan Galant. It will be able to scan around 6,000 patients a year.
The applications also include whole body studies, objective quantification of injuries, cardiac applications, and studies of the central nervous system, abdomen (such as prostate, liver and intestines) and breasts.
The evolution of MRI techniques has been remarkable in recent years, with increasing focus on making oncological studies of the whole body with molecular imaging, in comparison to the initial applications that focused primarily on the musculoskeletal and central nervous systems. The Amancio Ortega foundation is also financing the renovation and expansion of the Radiopharmacy Unit clean room in the nuclear medicine department.
This will enable preparation of radiopharmaceuticals or radioactive isotopes in the hospital itself. The work, which has involved an investment of close to €390,000 euros, is currently underway and will be completed by the end of the year.
The foundation will also provide the Sant Joan hospital with two linear accelerators for the oncology radiation unit, worth €4.8m. Work on the double bunkers to house them is expected to begin in February 2019 and it is hoped the first one will be installed and operational by the end of the year.