North West to open radiation therapy centre

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Mafikeng - The North West province is to get its own radiation therapy facility, to relieve the burden of cancer patients having to travel to Gauteng to get their treatment.

More than 300 patients in North West are currently receiving radiation therapy in Gauteng.

The R56.2 million radiation oncology unit, which is expected to be operational by the end of August, will be situated at the Klerksdorp Hospital in Dr Kenneth Kaunda.

Spokesperson for the provincial Department of Health and Social Development Tebogo Lekgethwane said some oncology patients were failing to finish their treatment as they had to travels long distances.

"The province was without radiation facility, hence patients were travelling to Gauteng hospitals for treatment at the expense of the department, to alleviate traveling costs and daily travelling," Mr Lekgethwane told BuaNews.

He said that in November 2007, the department had also established an interim home in Rosebank where patients could sleep over during their therapy.

MEC for Health and Social Development Minister Rebecca Kasienyane is currently on a two-day visit to the Dr Kenneth Kaunda District to check on and assess conditions in health facilities.

She is expected to visit the construction site on Friday to assess progress made in the construction.

During her first day visit on Thursday, Ms Kasienyane launched a certificate for Kosh Educare Development Project (KEDEP) in Ventersdorp.

The project, in conjunction with ABSA Bank, aims to train Educare Development practitioners to cater for the needs and development of children from early age.

Dr Kenneth Kaunda currently has more than 50 Early Childhood Development centres registered with KEDEP.