New multi-million-pound CT suite and scanner opened at Torbay Hospital

Image: Kathryn Westaway, chair of Torbay Hospital League of Friends, cuts a ribbon to open the new CT suite, pictured with members of staff and of the league.

Published: 19 October 2023

A new £2.8million radiotherapy planning CT suite that will continue to support and develop the delivery of cancer care has been opened at Torbay Hospital.

This investment in the new Radiotherapy Computed Tomography (RT-CT) scanner for Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust’s radiotherapy service will produce high quality scans faster, with more efficiency.

The new radiotherapy CT scanner was purchased with over £590,000 generously donated by Torbay Hospital League of Friends.

Radiotherapy techniques have become increasingly complex and Torbay Hospital’s radiotherapy department gives patients local access to modern and innovative radiotherapy treatments, providing a high standard of care with access to the most up-to-date technology.

The purpose-built RT-CT suite and facilities will also provide a more comfortable environment for the people that the team supports, at what can often be a daunting and unsettling time. This includes improved changing facilities and toilets, and an LED picture ceiling lighting and wall picture panels in the CT scanner room.

In order to undergo radiotherapy treatment the majority of patients will require a radiotherapy treatment planning CT scan to provide the data necessary to produce their unique treatment plan. Radiotherapy CT scanners are specially adapted to ensure the patient’s position is comfortable and can be reliably reproduced throughout their scan and at every radiotherapy treatment.

Nicole Dorey, Consultant Clinical Oncologist and Clinical Lead for Radiotherapy at Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust, said: “I was delighted to be able to personally thank Torbay Hospital League of Friends at the opening ceremony of the new Radiotherapy CT scanner.

“Their generous purchase of our new RT-CT scanner will enable us to continue to provide and develop the radiotherapy service at Torbay Hospital for our local population, and our therapeutic radiographers are looking forward to welcoming and scanning our first patients into the beautiful, purpose-built new CT suite in the near future.”

Sir Richard Ibbotson, chair at Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust, said: “It is clear to see the positive impact that the new CT scanner and suite will have on the experiences of the people we care for. It also will support our colleagues in continuing to provide a high standard of care for our local population.

“The speed at which the unit was built is testament to the hard work of our capital development team, contractors and many other teams who supported the project. I would also like to thank our cancer treatment teams who do incredible work and I look forward to seeing the suite in action as they continue to care for and treat local people.

“This incredible donation from the Torbay Hospital League of Friends for the scanner is another reminder of how important they are and of the generous support we receive from our local communities – I can’t thank them enough.”

Kathryn Westaway, chair of Torbay Hospital League of Friends, said: “It gives me great pleasure to be able to hand over this amazing piece of equipment to the hospital. My thanks go to the members of the League of Friends who work hard to raise funds, as well as the public for their generous donations.”

The project forms part of Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust’s Building a Brighter Future programme that is making a difference to how the organisation delivers services, aiming to provide better outcomes for local communities and better environments for staff.

Following the opening of the new CT suite, Torbay and South Devon will shortly be ready to open a brand-new £4.99million endoscopy unit next month and £15million new theatres at the start of 2024, helping to support an extra 4,500 people who are waiting for hip, knee and eye operations. Both of these projects will help to increase capacity and reduce waiting lists.