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Sat 28 Nov 2009 04:57 PM

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Cancer tests to cost 17 times less in Qatar now – paper

New critical leukaemia checkup in Qatar to significantly reduce diagnosis costs.

Cancer diagnosis and treatment monitoring is set to become at least 17 times cheaper, faster and accurate in Qatar, according to a report.

The Peninsula daily reported on Saturday that cheaper services would be possible in the country with the introduction of a new critical leukaemia checkup at Hamad Medical Corporations (HMC).

The test is being conducted at the Cancer Molecular Medicine (CMM) section of HMC’s Molecular Genetics Laboratory, it added.

The laboratory along with Al Amal Hospital has created an easier and quicker method of diagnosing cancer. Al Amal Hospital provides samples from cancer and leukaemia patients, and the lab helps in diagnosis and in monitoring body response to cancer treatment, The Peninsula said.

“Earlier, the test samples were sent to the US, which costs over QR400,000 ($109,850) a year, with results coming approximately two weeks later. With the service being available here, it becomes 17 times cheaper and much faster. This service will be a boon for cancer treatment in Qatar,” Dr Muna Al Tamimi, Clinical Scientist at the laboratory told the daily.

It added that under the new system, samples can be sent directly to the Molecular Genetics Laboratory at HMC, indicating greater sensitivity in the samples. The laboratory tests each sample for just over QR100 ($27), and ensures that the results are produced between three to five days, The Peninsula noted.

 “Added to this, it is now possible to detect and monitor efficacy of the treatment. It allows the clinic to monitor the overall improvement and forecast outcome of the treatment,” Al Tamimi said.

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