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Image: Bali Mandar Hospital. Credit: rsbm.baliprov.go.id.

A new cancer treatment center is being built in Sanur and is planned to start operations in 2020.

Head of the Bali Provincial Services, Ketut Suarjaya said that the facility at the Bali Mandara General Hospital (RSUD) was being built to help Sanglah Hospital, which is currently overwhelmed by cancer patients.

“Until now, radiation and chemotherapy have been focused only at Sanglah. Patients have to wait in queue, up to a year, to get radiation treatment. Sometimes the state of the cancer is too far advanced before they get to the end of the queue. Often the machines are also damaged,” he explained.

Director of Bali Mandara Hospital, Gede Bagus Darmayasa said the cancer treatment center would be the most sophisticated in Bali, supported by the latest radiotherapy and chemotherapy tools. The space will have two sets of cancer treatment facilities.

“It is estimated that once the two facilities in the space are operational they we will be able to serve 100 patients per day,” he said to reporters during a visit with the Ministry of Health, Tuesday (4/23/2019).

The building will consist of three floors. The top floor will be a nuclear medicine center which has seven observation rooms. Nuclear medicine is the latest form of medical imaging and radiology that uses small amounts of radioactive material to diagnose or treat a variety of diseases. “So in the future, this cancer center can detect thyroid cancer amongst other cancers. We are targeting this to be ready in 2021,” said Gede.

The construction of the cancer center, which is slated to cost Rp 200 billion, is 100 percent funded by the Regional Expenditure Budget. In order for the cancer treatment to be effective, a governor’s regulation had been compiled that allows cancer patients with BPJS to be directly referred to the service centers that have the capacity, regardless of the hospital class. At present, the percentage of Balinese who suffer from cancer is around 2.3 percent. The most common cases are the cervix, breast and lung cancer.

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