Help Bring a PET/CT Scanner to the Royal Alex

When we see more, we can do more.

Positron Emission Tomography and Computed Tomography (PET/CT) scanning is one of the most frequently used molecular imaging procedures; however, this procedure is currently not available at the Royal Alexandra Hospital.

PET/CT scans provide information that is unattainable through other imaging technologies by imaging the function of the body at the molecular level. Having access to a PET/CT scanner will enable Royal Alexandra Hospital physicians to identify disease in its earliest stages and determine its exact location—often before symptoms occur or abnormalities can be detected with other diagnostic tests. 

"This new PET/CT scanner will allow the Alex to become the primary intake for cancer related and routine PET/CT scans for Edmonton and northern Alberta. This has a large impact on a number of areas of service at the Royal Alex. A new scanner will save all of our patients a trip to another hospital, and it will save the health system significant costs." ~ Dr. Bill Anderson, Edmonton Zone Clinical Director, Diagnostic Imaging

There are multiple ways that PET/CT scans can make a significant difference for patients at the Royal Alex. Your support for the purchase of a PET/CT scanner will allow for the detection, diagnosis, staging, and treatment of cancer; the diagnosis and treatment of important neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Disease; and applications in heart disease. It will also aid in the identification and treatment of infection or inflammation.

Applications for the PET/CT scanner do not end with the conditions mentioned above. The introduction of new PET/CT tracers in Edmonton over the next ten years—many of which are already used in other places—mean that the applications for use will only continue to grow.

I was a patient who had to go elsewhere for a PET scan while being treated at the Royal Alex. Having access to a PET scan allowed me to beat the cancer clock and for that, I am forever grateful. With more than 44,000 surgeries taking place at the Royal Alex Hospital each year, many of them cancer surgeries, you can see why the PET/CT scanner is absolutely necessary for this hospital. I hope you will support the foundation in their efforts to make this goal a reality.

Why Here, Why Now?

Current accessibility to PET/CT scanning is limited to two clinical scanners in Edmonton, neither of which are located at the Royal Alexandra Hospital. Currently, the focus of PET/CT scanning in Edmonton has been in Oncology, but that focus needs to  expand. 

The current scanners are at maximum scanning load, and there has been an increasing demand for outpatients and inpatients, which will continue to increase due to a growing and aging population in Alberta.

Presently, Royal Alexandra Hospital inpatients and outpatients requiring PET/CT scanning are transferred to alternate sites; these transfers result in significant patient transfer costs, costs that would be saved if a scanner was available at the Royal Alex.

The World Health Organization recommends one PET/CT scanner per 500,000 population. Alberta is less than half this recommendation at 1 PET/CT scanner per one million people.

A PET/CT scanner at the Royal Alex will not only provide onsite access for Alex patients, it will also provide support for the Sturgeon Community Hospital, Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital, Strathcona Community Health Centre, Ft. Saskatchewan Community Hospital, and numerous regional Northern Health centers and programs. This third scanner will also be the support scanner to allow for regional-continued service should one of the other two require downtime for maintenance or replacement.

An investment in the Royal Alexandra Hospital PET/CT Scanner means an investment in the future health of all Albertans.

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