The Prime Minister's Office (PMO) has given the green light for a Rs 150-crore cancer hospital to come up in Muzaffarpur.

Tata Trusts and the Bhabha Atomic Research Center (BARC) will jointly create infrastructure for the hospital, for which 15 acres of land will be allocated on the campus of the Shri Krishna Medical College and Hospital (SKMCH).

"We have started the process of land transfer for the Rs 150-crore cancer hospital project approved by the PMO," said state health minister Mangal Pandey.

This will be the second such center for providing specialised cancer treatment after the State Cancer Institute being developed at the Indira Gandhi Institute of Medical Sciences (IGIMS) in Patna, for which Center has earmarked Rs 200 crore.

The state health department will also tie up with BARC and Tata Trusts on opening cancer detection centers in Bihar districts.

Pandey and officials from the health department, BARC and Tata Trusts will meet on Wednesday to chalk out the plan of action for both projects.

As of now, treatment for all types of cancer is available neither in government nor private hospitals in Bihar, forcing patients to go outside the state.

Patna Medical College and Hospital (PMCH), the biggest state-run healthcare hub, offers virtually zero cancer care. The only machine the PMCH has for radiation therapy is an outdated cobalt machine, which has not been used for a year. Posts of technicians and radiation safety officers have remained vacant for months. The Regional Cancer Center of the IGIMS also treats patients with the help of the outdated cobalt machine.

A health department official said Wednesday's meeting would discuss whether the new cancer hospital would run on public-private partnership mode or not, and how cancer detection facilities can be set up in the districts.

Around 33 percent of cancer cases are being detected at the primary health centers and the rest of the people are diagnosed when the cancer reaches an advanced stage, the official said. – Telegraph India 

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