Specialist scanner for North and East Yorkshire cancer patients

Cancer patients in North and East Yorkshire are being saved a 90 mile round trip for a crucial scan with the launch of a specialist mobile scanner at Scarborough Hospital.
staff outside hospital

The PET-CT scanner produces detailed three-dimensional images of the inside of the body to determine how far the cancer has spread and how well it's responding to treatment.

Previously all cancer patients from York, Scarborough, Malton, Bridlington and Selby needed to travel to other hospital sites to get access to this essential diagnostic test. The closest PET-CT scanners are located at Castle Hill Hospital in Hull, St James in
Leeds and James Cook Hospital in Middlesborough.

The specialist scan means that clinicians can more quickly identify the presence, location and severity of cancers and the information is used to help ensure patients receive the right treatment.

Currently the scanner is on site one day a week and can complete 14-16 scans per day. The service is being run in partnership with the UK’s specialist provider of diagnostic and healthcare solutions, Alliance Medical Limited, whose mobile unit will be located in a newly created area on the ambulance roadway near the current A&E department.

Christine Norris, Cancer Improvement and Performance Manager at York and Scarborough Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, who has led the project, said: “I’m thrilled to be able to deliver services more locally and avoid patients and their families having to travel long distances for a diagnostic test, which will hopefully make things a little easier for them.

As well as being great news for our patients, it is a fantastic opportunity for our staff who are able to use their specialist skills to report these scans locally, providing a service to patients and working more closely with their referring clinician.
— Christine Norris

“It’s been around two years in the making and a huge team effort from departments across the Trust, our partners and in particular the York and Scarborough Hospitals Charity who have helped fund this vital service. Despite challenges and delays due to the pandemic, this new service will support our cancer patients for many years to come and we are rightly proud of being able to provide this locally.”

York and Scarborough Hospital Charity provided £110,000 to help get the project off the ground.

Rachel Brook, Charity Operations Manager, said: “Travelling for these scans is time consuming, costly and tiring for patients and their families especially when they are going through such an emotional time. Being able to support this type of project is fantastic and I’m sure our dedicated fundraisers would agree.”

David Cahill, Chief Commercial and Strategy Officer from Alliance Medical said: “Alliance Medical are delighted to be able add this further location to provide access for PET-CT scans. We continue our commitment to providing a national network of PET-CT which provides world class levels of service for our patients and in partnership with the NHS.”

Looking for information about health and care?

Find advice and information to help you stay well and make decisions about your health and social care support.

Find advice and information