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Signing the Agreement of Technology Transfer and Equipment Operation of the Saudi Center for Particle Therapy
15 January 2012
   Under the auspices of His Excellency the Minister of Health, Dr. Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al-Rabeeah, the contract of technology transfer and equipment operation of the Saudi Center for Particle Therapy, to be established in King Fahad Medical City (KFMC), has been signed today at the Minister's office between the Center and Varian Medical Systems Inc., known for proton therapy technology. The company obtains a factory in Germany, which is internationally renowned for its mastery in this domain.
 
This project, planned to be established in King Fahad Medical City, has been approved by the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, and its inauguration is expected to be and important medical event. For the first time in the whole region, it will be using the proton therapy technology in oncology treatment. This technology has witnessed significant development in the course of the past decade, with the effect that the number of proton therapy centers in Europe and U.S. has amounted to 19 centers. And in light of the recent studies, it could be said that the Center will meet the GCC states' requirements.
 
Speaking of the project, Dr. Abdullah Al-Amro, Chief Executive Officer King Fahad Medical City, said that signing this agreement is meant to fulfill one of the general objectives pinpointed in healthcare strategy, centered upon the necessity of technology transfer, and finding new funding streams to reinforce government funding, as well as covering the costs of health projects.
 
According to Dr. Al-Amro, this step enhances the role of the private sector in the health system, by means of integration with the governmental sector in the provision of health services and participation in the establishment, management and operation of health facilities and health development projects. This is to be brought about by encouraging private sector participation in the establishment, management, funding and equipment of governmental facilities, as well as the possession and management of the joint-stock companies specialized in health facilities operation, in addition to prompting the development of national industry in the field of health, by facilitating health investment for the benefit of the health sector as a whole.
 
Dr. Al-Amro further explained that the project, established in cooperation with the private sector has been approved by the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, who always shows keen interest in the development of the health services provided in the Kingdom. It also has received significant support from His Excellency, Dr. Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al-Rabeeah, who pays thorough attention to all the projects providing curative services for patients. This agreement, he added, is considered the first phase, whereupon the equipment of the center will be provided. He also affirmed that the establishment of the Saudi Center for Particle Therapy for oncology treatment by using the proton therapy technology is a terrific quantum leap in oncology therapy, as it is the most advanced medical technologies in the world.
 
Dr. Al-Amro went on to say that, the Center is planned to be established in cooperation with the private sector. A consortium will build, equip and operate the Center, which will come, thereafter, to the possession of King Fahad Medical City. It will take part in providing curative services using and advanced technology, thus helping reduce the duration of hospital stay. It will also help oncology patients, Allah willing, to recover quickly. The Center, Al-Amro continued, is going to make oncology patients come along from all the GCC states to the Kingdom, in pursuit of excellent treatment.
 
It is worthy mentioning that the Saudi Center for Particle Therapy will be treating cancer patients by using the proton therapy technology. This advanced technology derives its peculiar importance from the fact that it sheds intensified radiation on the tumor, without affecting the surrounding tissue.
 
Scientific studies have proven the effectiveness of proton therapy in the treatment of children's tumors, eye tumors, bottom-of-brain tumors, prostate tumors, as well as the tumors near the organs with high sensitivity to radiation. Besides, proton therapy is incomparably effective in the treatment of big tumor wrapped around sensitive organs. And in addition to its unparalleled efficiency in oncology treatment, proton therapy, moreover, has the least side effects, if compared to any other radiation therapy. Thus, it saves the treatment cost of the side effects resulting from the other radiation therapy technologies.
 
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