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Miami meeting on radiation therapy targets patient safety
Date:6/24/2010

COLLEGE PARK, MD (June 24, 2010) -- A meeting in Miami this week will bring together some of the world's leading experts from inside and outside the clinic to discuss safety in radiation therapy -- a critical method for treating cancer.

Surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy are the three main treatments for cancer. It is estimated that two-thirds of all patients with cancer will receive radiation at some point during their course of treatment.

The meeting, "Safety in Radiation Therapy -- A Call to Action," takes place June 24-25, 2010 at the Hyatt Regency Miami and will be hosted by the American Association of Physicists in Medicine (AAPM) and the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO).

"Radiation therapy provides safe and effective treatment of cancer and other diseases for hundreds of thousands of people each year," says AAPM President Michael Herman, Ph.D., a co-organizer of the meeting. "The purpose of this gathering is to ask, as a profession, how we are going to continue to move forward and create the safest environment for patients."

"Our highest priority has always been ensuring patients receive the safest, most effective treatments. However, even one error is too many and I hope this meeting will help us make radiation therapy even safer," says ASTRO Board Chairman Tim R. Williams, M.D. "It is frightening to receive the diagnosis of cancer, and completing treatment successfully should be the primary concern of cancer patients and their families. They need to know that their treatments are as safe as possible, period."

The meeting will examine the process of radiation therapy from all perspectives, including those of all members of cancer treatment teams -- the radiation oncologists, medical physicists, radiation therapists, and dosimetrists who together care for and oversee the safety of the patient.

The meeting will also detail what roles the major equipment manufacturers, regula
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Contact: Jason Socrates Bardi
jbardi@aip.org
858-775-4080
American Institute of Physics
Source:Eurekalert

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