By Forum Staff
Acting Queens Borough President Sharon Lee on Tuesday announced a $5.4 million allocation to NYC Health + Hospitals/Elmhurst to fully fund the purchase and installation of a new medical linear accelerator (LINAC) in its oncology unit within months, augmenting the Level 1 trauma center’s ability to provide life-saving, high-quality care to Queens residents battling cancer.
The best piece of equipment in the industry, the new Varian TrueBeam linear accelerator — a state-of-the-art external beam radiation device that targets and destroys cancerous cells with high-energy x-rays while sparing surrounding healthy tissue — will be installed in early 2021. The existing linear accelerator was originally installed in 2004 and is nearing the end of its useful life. Upon its installation, the innovative radiotherapy technology will be used to image and treat a wide range of cancers, while ensuring faster and more precise care for the patient.
“Cancer has spared no one in some way, and stolen so many. The battle against cancer is a fierce race against precious time,” Lee said. “Investing in cutting-edge technology and bringing it right here to Elmhurst Hospital is a direct investment into our families, our futures and more birthdays. Top-of-the-line treatment should and will be available for us right here at home, without having to cross a bridge or go through a tunnel. Queens families are worth it, and so we are bringing precision and speed to give our fight against cancer a stronger chance.”
NYC Health + Hospitals Vice President and NYC Health + Hospitals/Elmhurst CEO Israel Rocha added, “Acquiring a new, state-of-the-art LINAC machine will allow us to offer patients the latest and best technology available for treating cancer. This critical investment in upgraded equipment will ensure that cancer patients in the borough of Queens have access to vital, life-saving treatments and the services they need.”
Photos Courtesy of Queens Borough President’s Office