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Patients past and present asked to support campaign

Thousands of patients who have had tests at Bath’s Royal United Hospital are being asked to help with a £100,000 fundraising appeal.

People who have had medical investigations carried out by the RUH’s nuclear medicine department are to get letters telling them about the first part of the Cancer Care campaign being run by the Forever Friends Appeal.

The letter, from medical director Dr Tim Craft and consultant radiologist Dr Richard Graham, will tell patients who have been investigated using the existing gamma camera about the appeal to buy a new gamma CT-scanner.

This will cost £650,000, with the department pledging to bring in £100,000 of this sum.

The mailshot follows the success of similar letters sent by staff in the radiology department in 2006 and the neonatal intensive care unit in 2009 on behalf of Forever Friends campaigns.

The new scanner would help patients in the cardiology, neurology, orthopaedics, urology, respiratory, gastroenterology and oncology departments.

Dr Graham said: “In the nuclear medicine department, we are constantly trying to improve the services we provide and offer our patients.

“The new gamma-CT scanner is so advanced because of its ability to combine a traditional gamma camera and a CT scanner, providing very detailed images that can identify abnormalities at an earlier stage than other types of imaging, while accurately pinpointing their location for subsequent treatment.

“This will be one of the first of its kind in the south west and, with this technology, we will be able to provide a much better service for our patients during a very stressful time.”

Appeal donor care officer Jan Witt said: “We are absolutely delighted with nuclear medicine’s support and feel very positive and confident that their mini-appeal will be a great success and give our campaign a huge boost.

“Having the department working with us to raise funds towards a gamma-CT scanner will help us enormously, and hopefully enable us to get closer to reaching our £650,000 goal.”

Tim Hobbs, head of the Forever Friends team, added: “We are very aware that many patients, having been cared for by the RUH, are very grateful for their treatment and frequently wish to give something back to their local hospital.”

Picture courtesy of The Bath Chronicle