Community Future of MedTech

Varian Medical Systems & GenesisCare Forge Alliance

Varian and GenesisCare have announced the formation of a strategic partnership to increase Australian patient access to potentially life-saving radiation therapy, coupled with significant funding into cancer care research.

The partnership between Varian, a global leader in developing and delivering cancer care solutions, and GenesisCare, Australia’s largest private provider of cancer care, will involve the roll-out of a range of world-leading hardware and software over the ensuing five years.

An estimated 138,000 new cancer cases will be diagnosed in Australia this year, with that number set to rise to 150,000 by 2020.1 Radiation therapy contributes to 40 per cent of all cancer cures world-wide, helps to relieve symptoms, such as pain, and improves patient quality of life.

According to radiation oncologist and GenesisCare’s Australian Chief Medical Officer, Associate Professor Peter O’Brien, Newcastle, radiation therapy is a highly effective cancer treatment, but is under-utilised in Australia, despite costing less than nine cents in every dollar spent on cancer diagnosis and treatment.

“The advances in radiation therapy technology in recent years have been quite phenomenal, and we’re now able to use platforms that give us pinpoint accuracy and streamlined access to patient data. This helps us deliver better outcomes for our patients, which is ultimately what matters most.”

In addition to the installation of up to 35 Varian linear accelerators and the use of Varian’s Eclipse treatment planning software as the preferred GenesisCare solution in Australia, the partnership will also include support for skin cancer clinical trials utilising Varian’s RapidArc technology.

“Improving the quality of life for skin cancer patients is a major research focus for GenesisCare, so we’re thrilled that Varian will be investing in new skin cancer trials as part of this partnership,” Prof O’Brien said.

“Radiation therapy can be transformative for people with chronic skin cancer, and we aim to be at the forefront of research that can advance treatment for patients, both in Australia and internationally.”

Skin cancer is among the nation’s most prevalent cancers.3 It accounts for around 80 per cent of new cancer diagnoses, with two-in-three Australians diagnosed with skin cancer by 70 years of age.

GenesisCare Chief Executive Officer, Dan Collins, Sydney, says the partnership with Varian will support advances in radiation therapy and the evolution of Varian’s products and services to deliver proven new technology to patients as quickly as possible.

“GenesisCare is excited to be partnering with Varian to accelerate the roll-out of ground-breaking radiation therapy technology that’s set to improve clinician efficiency and accuracy. We’re committed to increasing access to world class patient care, and will be installing up to 70 new linear accelerators internationally, as part of this agreement. This will mean a big boost in high quality cancer treatment in areas of need,” said Mr Collins.

Varian Australasia Managing Director Chris Cowley, Sydney, says the Varian/GenesisCare partnership represents another significant step towards Varian’s aim of achieving a world free from fear of cancer.

“Varian is delighted to be partnering with GenesisCare to increase Australian patient access to our radiation technology, and to ultimately improve the cancer treatment experience, and hopefully outcomes, for those in need.

“We are dedicated to combining the ingenuity of people with the power of data and technology to achieve new victories against cancer, and are therefore thrilled that GenesisCare has put their faith in our products with this volume commitment to both our hardware and software platforms,” Mr Cowley said.

The partnership will also focus on the emerging field of theranostics, also known as molecular targeted radiation. Theranostics uses nanoscience to unite diagnostic and therapeutic applications to form a single cancer fighting agent. Utilising Varian’s expertise in image-guided technology and GenesisCare’s experience in clinical and research domains, Varian and GenesisCare will partner to develop image-guided treatment monitoring solutions in this evolving area.

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