One of the most exciting aspects about VERO is how it will improve patient treatments well into the future. Indeed, part of the reason why we selected technology like VERO at BC Cancer was that we saw its future developmental potential. We are just at the beginning stages of using VERO’s full potential. As time goes on, we will be rolling out increasingly sophisticated treatment techniques and that is what makes it so exciting to work with.

Every patient who undergoes treatment on the VERO is part of our ethics-approved research protocol where we analyze the many ways in which the technology can target hard-to-treat cancers. This is vital as it allows us to tap into and discover new treatment methods that would never have been offered before if it weren’t for this program. As we begin to treat patients using VERO, a tremendous amount of work will begin behind-the-scenes to develop these treatment strategies with the goal of saving lives and improving the quality of life of cancer patients.

None of these advancements would be possible if it weren’t for the generosity of BC Cancer Foundation donors who, in record time, raised $6.5-million to bring VERO to BC Cancer in 2014. It’s important to note that the impacts of these contributions are long-lasting. These funds not only cover the capital costs of the equipment, but it also allows us to operate and conduct research with VERO, and ultimately make gains in cancer treatment that wouldn’t otherwise be possible. Thanks to BC Cancer Foundation donors, the future of radiation oncology looks brighter than ever.

I remember how a patient of mine who was diagnosed with a brain tumour saw a BC Cancer Foundation plaque outside the vault where he was receiving treatment and explained to me how he felt compelled to advance treatment options for other patients like him. He ended making a sizeable contribution to the Foundation’s campaign so that others could benefit in the future. It’s a wonderful example of the capacity we each have to raise the standard of care for patients in this province.

Thanks for reading,

Dr. Ma

Radiation Oncologist, BC Cancer