Seoul, Korea - A Viable Option for Pediatric Proton Patients

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Seoul, Korea - A Viable Option for Pediatric Proton Patients Unable to Gain Access to U.S. Proton Centers.

My first reaction was taking a child to South Korea for proton treatment would be impractical and extremely difficult

The Pediatric Proton Foundation's Executive Director, Susan Ralston, visited Korea's Proton Therapy Center and National Cancer Center last week. She was also a keynote speaker at the 2010 Proton Beam Therapy Korea Forum in Seoul, Korea at the invitation of the Korean Tourism Organization and KMI International. In November 2009, the South Korean government opened the doors of the proton center for the United States and other western countries' patients for medical tourism. "My first reaction was taking a child to South Korea for proton treatment would be impractical and extremely difficult," said Susan Ralston. "I decided to make the trip since in 2009, only approximately 380 cancer-stricken children were treated in U.S. proton centers while over 3,000 children could potentially have benefitted," Ralston continued.

Seoul's proton center opened its doors in March 2007, and recruited experienced doctors from the United States to offer treatment. "I know most parents would go to the ends of the earth to ensure their child receives proton radiation which spares their child the devastating effects of traditional (x-ray/photon) radiation and drastically reduces the chance of radiation-induced secondary malignancy. The Seoul Proton facility was impressive and the doctors and staff were top-notch. In my opinion, Seoul is a viable alternative for those unable to gain access to a U.S. proton center," Ralston concluded.

About the Foundation:

The Pediatric Proton Foundation is uniquely positioned as an independent, nonprofit charity that relies on voluntary funding from a variety of sources to be able to provide the most objective information available about pediatric proton cancer treatment. Our mission is to provide education, advocacy and assistance to families in need of pediatric proton treatment. We are a non-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization. Contributors may be able to deduct some or the entire amount of their donations for tax purposes.

For more information, visit the Pediatric Proton Foundation's website at: http://www.pediatricprotonfoundation.org.

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Susan Ralston
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