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TMCNet:  UCLH Partners with Proton International to Grow Proton Beam Therapy Services in the UK

[April 21, 2017]

UCLH Partners with Proton International to Grow Proton Beam Therapy Services in the UK

UCLH is partnering with Proton International to extend access to proton beam therapy to private patients from across the world. From 2020, the treatment will be delivered at UCLH's new cancer and surgery centre in London, alongside the service offered to NHS patients, and generating funding to reinvest in the NHS.

Proton beam therapy (PBT) is a highly precise and effective form of radiotherapy. It targets tumours with less risk of damage to surrounding healthy tissue than conventional radiotherapy, making it particularly effective for some rare childhood cancers and complex tumours, for example, those affecting the base of the skull or the spine.

Currently, the NHS funds UK patients who would benefit from this treatment to access it overseas. A NHS high energy proton beam therapy service is being developed, with the first centre opening in 2018, at The Christie NHS Foundation Trust in Manchester, followed by the UCLH centre, opening in 2020. The UCLH centre will be in a state-of-the-art building with four floors below ground and five floors above ground. Once the UCLH NHS service is up and running, the additional capacity provided through this partnership will mean private patients will also be able to access proton beam therapy treatment.

UCLH's partnership with Proton International enables the development of a private PBT service within the facility, at no additional cost to the taxpayer. Proton International's extensive experience in delivering PBT, coupled with UCLH's expertise in radiotheapy and cancer care, means this new service will offer high quality care to patients from across the globe.

"This partnership is the latest milestone in the development of our world-class centre. As a result both NHS and private patients will be able to benefit from this advanced treatment in London," said Catherine Pollard, Director of Strategic Development, UCLH.

Chris Chandler, founder and president of Proton International, has led the development and/or operation of 15 proton centres in the United States and abroad. He said: "We're very pleased to be working with UCLH and UK private medical insurers to provide private patients with the highest level of care and comfort and access to appropriate clinical trials in this new facility." The partnership will provide access to proton therapy to both UCLH and qualified consultants from other Institutions for their UK and International private patients. The partnership was formed following a competitive tendering process.

About Proton International

Proton International was founded in 2013 to develop and operate proton centres with high quality clinical partners. Proton International is a subsidiary of Healthcare Technologies International (HTI). HTI began operations in 1972 and has developed over 250 cancer centres on 4 continents and provides private patient cancer services at St. James Cancer Centre in Leeds. In addition to the UCLH partnership, Proton International is currently participating in a number of proton facilities including the following locations:

  • William Beaumont Hospital - Royal Oak Michigan
  • University Medical Center Groningen, Groningen, Netherlands
  • Delray Medical Center, Delray Beach, Florida
  • The University of Alabama Birmingham, Birmingham, AL
  • University Hospital Halle (Saale), Halle, Germany

About UCLH (University College London Hospitals Foundation Trust)

UCLH (University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust), situated in the West End of London, is one of the largest NHS trusts in the United Kingdom and provides first-class acute and specialist services. The state-of-the-art University College Hospital which opened in 2005, is the focal point of UCLH alongside five cutting-edge specialist hospitals. UCLH is committed to research and development and forms part of UCL Partners, which was officially designated as one of the UK's first academic health science centres by the Department of Health in March 2009. UCLH works closely with UCL, translating research into treatments for patients.


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