Purpose: The purpose of this study is to evaluate the potential of leveraging hypofractionated radiotherapy (HFRT) to address disparities in access to radiotherapy in the low- and middle-income countries (LMIC) in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA).
Methods: The national cost savings for adopting HFRT versus conventional fractionationation (CFRT) for prostate and breast cancer in different LMIC in SSA were calculated using an activity-based-costing model described in previous published work.1 These estimations were extrapolated between 2020 and 2030 to determine expected total cost savings over the next 10 years. To calculate the percentage increase in treatment throughput, it was assumed that the time it takes to plan treatment for conventional radiotherapy is the same as the time for planning. It is also reasonably assumed that the time it takes to treat a patient for each fraction is approximately the same. Additionally, an infrastructure assessment survey was administered to 18 African radiotherapy to identify gaps in available resources needed to deliver HFRT safely and effectively.
Results: By adopting HFRT in SSA, the national cost savings was estimated to be 1.1 billion US$ (breast cancer) and 767 million US$ (prostate cancer) projecting from 2020 to 2030. When considering the relative fraction length of CFRT and HFRT courses, patient throughput could be expected to increase by 66% (breast cancer) and 95% (prostate cancer). The survey identified a general lack of equipment associated with image-guiding techniques such as integrated imaging systems and fiducial implants.
Conclusion: Increased adoption of HFRT could lead to significant increase in access to treatment in LMIC and save substantial costs. There is need for additional investment in infrastructure and training of medical physicists to enable such increased adoption of evidence-based HFRT.
Not Applicable / None Entered.
TH- External Beam- Photons: Development (new technology and techniques)