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Belarus president praises Belarusian oncologists

Belarusian oncologists deserve a Nobel prize. Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko made the statement as he talked to patients of the Minsk city early cancer detection and treatment center on 29 December, BelTA has learned.

The patients told the head of state how treatment procedures are organized over there. They praised the sensitive attitude and attention demonstrated by the medics. Professional skills of the doctors inspire hope for speedy recovery, they noted.

“They should be awarded a Nobel Prize. They cure everyone here,” noted Alexander Lukashenko. The patients agreed to that statement.

The president talked to every patient, including children. Virtually all of them have passed through several treatment cycles. Most of them demonstrate no relapse of the disease now.

Alexander Lukashenko presented New Year gifts to young patients and their parents. He wished them strong health and long life. In turn, the kids presented souvenirs of their own to the head of state. One of the girls had painted a picture inspired by her mother's recovery. Alexander Lukashenko promised it will be put on display in the Palace of Independence.

During the tour of the medical institution the head of state was told that the Minsk city early cancer detection and treatment center caters not only to Minskers but the entire country as a whole. It was noted that the number of patients with oncological diseases has gone up in the last 25 years, including due to better diagnostics methods and due to changes in the demographic structure of the population.

Vladimir Karanik, the cancer center's Chief Physician, said that they had focused on effective technologies and had managed to reduce mortality rate in spite of rising morbidity thanks to new equipment. “We are proud that we've managed to increase the number of treated patients by 2.5 times while the number of beds has increased by some 10%. Re-organization and re-equipment have allowed us to reach the highest standards within virtually three years. We can now treat more patients and keep oncological treatment within reach,” said the medic.

The head physician also thanked the Belarusian pharmaceutical industry. “Belarus-made medications represent 92% of the medications we used to treat our patients in the last five years,” he said.

The president was informed how life support systems are organized in the radiation medicine department. He was made familiar with modern methods for diagnosing and treating oncological patients, with patient accommodation conditions in the clinic.

Minsk city early cancer detection and treatment center was established in 1934. It is the country's oldest cancer treatment institution.

At present the center comprises a hospital with 608 beds and a clinic, which can welcome 500 patients per shift. Every year the surgery division performs about 10,000 surgeries, with complicated and high-tech surgeries accounting for more than half of them. Linear accelerators, which are unparalleled in the Commonwealth of Independent States, were commissioned in 2015. Thanks to their introduction the radiation medicine department mastered state-of-the-art high-precision radiation treatment methods.

Decisions were made in 2011 to reconstruct the cancer treatment center and build a new radiology wing. The institution's infrastructure was modernized. The new radiology wing will boast Europe's largest radiation medicine department for 20 patients. It will greatly improve the cancer center's capability to perform radioiodine therapy and radioiodine diagnostics procedures for patients suffering from thyroid cancer.

In the last five years the number of registered cancer patients in Minsk rose by virtually 30% and stands at about 63,300 people. Thanks to the close attention the Belarusian government pays to the problem, the introduction of modern diagnostics and treatment methods an increase in mortality rate has been prevented while morbidity has greatly increased.

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