Carcassonne. State-of-the-art equipment to treat cancer


the essential
In Carcassonne, the oncological radiotherapy department has had, since March, a new, more precise and efficient device, the linear accelerator.

In health, technology is an integral part of a healing process. Indeed, to be able to guarantee maximum quality of care, it is essential to have state-of-the-art machines. The Carcassonne hospital center has become the proud owner of one of the most powerful linear accelerators in the world. Only two other establishments in France have such equipment. This will allow the Carcassonne hospital to be able to treat cancer patients as well as possible.

0.3mm accuracy

In the context of the fight against the disease, this technological feat aims to analyze tumors as well as possible, especially those of small sizes very difficult to study with a conventional machine. Indeed, the rotary arm of the machine works so that when it goes, it deviates only 0.3 mm. Chantal Calmet Smets, medical physicist at the CH in Carcassonne, remains to this day captivated by this linear accelerator: “I think that we do not realize the precision of this machine. The National Agency for the Safety of Medicines and Health Products (ANSM) imposes a minimum precision of 2 mm, and we have a tool that offers 0.3: it’s simply incredible! “.

Long-term implementation

This type of technological advance in Carcassonne allows the hospital to offer a quality of care that has nothing to envy to other major French cities. The medical staff assure that “the same protocol is used here or elsewhere, since it is decided on a national scale. “.

This new linear accelerator will have taken a long time before it can be used at the Carcassonnais hospital center. A little over four months will have separated the delivery of the product and the date on which the first patient benefited from it. Indeed, the machine arrived on site on December 2 for an end of installation on the 26th. Then followed two and a half months of calibration, configuration, but also testing. It was also during this period that the hospital’s nursing staff was trained, according to the rules set by the nuclear safety authorities (ASN). These staff measure the chance they have of being able to develop in their professional capacities. This is the case of Karine Lemaire, senior manager and co-manager of the cancer unit who says “proud to be able to work with equipment of this quality. I thank the management of the hospital center for trusting us and bringing us this recognition.”. Once all the caregivers were able to use this linear accelerator, D-Day arrived on March 12, where the first patient could benefit.

To guarantee regularity in terms of quality, Dr Samir Hacen ensures that “the machine is very regularly checked by external audits and that maintenance is carried out whenever it is necessary”. This is currently confirmed, since at the beginning of July, the linear accelerator is in full revision.


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