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Eco park and house tank to accompany UCI’s PET center

4 July 2024, 3:37 pm

By Byamukama Alozious

The Uganda Cancer Institute has launched a significant project at Mulago hill in Kampala, unveiling plans for a Positron Emission Tomography (PET) center alongside an Eco garden and house tank. This initiative marks the second phase of the PET molecular imaging project aimed at enhancing diagnostic capabilities for various medical conditions, including cancer.

Positron Emission Tomography uses small amounts of radioactive material to visualise internal body structures and functions. It plays a crucial role in cancer detection, staging, treatment monitoring, and radiation therapy guidance. At the groundbreaking event, Dr. Jackson Orem emphasised that the $120 million project, funded by the Government of Uganda, will transform healthcare delivery over the next 50 years.

“The Eco park will provide a serene environment for patients, visitors, and nurses, offering much needed green spaces for relaxation,” Dr. Orem explained. Additionally, the house tank, with a capacity of 2.2 million liters, will serve both the Uganda Cancer Institute and other health institutions within Mulago.

Osinde Godfrey, a radio pharmacist and project manager, highlighted the four year timeline for completion, noting initial delays due to infrastructure adjustments such as relocating power lines and water tanks. Claire Ruhweza of Southgate Consultants confirmed that the architectural designs for the seven level PET center are finalised, incorporating laboratories, training rooms, and imaging facilities.

The architectural design of the PET center upon completion.

David Nuwamanya, Principal Administrator, urged the efficient use of land acquired from Mulago National Referral Hospital for future expansions, citing critical water shortages. “Water scarcity has been a longstanding challenge,” Nuwamanya remarked. The current 500,000-liter capacity, operational since the 1960s, has proven insufficient for the 50 institutions at Mulago.

The 2022 statistics from the Uganda cancer society.

The project’s comprehensive approach not only addresses immediate healthcare needs but also positions Uganda as a regional leader in advanced medical imaging and treatment facilities.