TYLER, TX (KLTV) - A few drops of rain didn't seem to stop the party at the UT Health Science Center Tuesday.
"I can't express to you how proud I am to have 900 people show up in the rain to participate in this celebration," says UTHSC President Kirk Calhoun.
And why wouldn't they? A brand-new, cancer-fighting facility is up and ready to go. And it is long over do.
"There's high incidents of cancer in Northeast Texas," says UTHSC cancer specialist Tim Ochran.
Walking through the halls, it is clear to see those treated here will be in the arms of comfort... but it is not all fun and games, this facility means business.
They say it is necessary to treat more citizens and provide them with cutting edge technology.
And speaking of technology, this new machine has a heck-of-uh-punch.
They call it the, "true beam," it is made by Varien. They say it is the latest in technology in radiation therapy.
Prior to "true beam," radiation therapy would affect healthy tissue surrounding the tumor. Not anymore. This machine gets the tumor. And only the tumor.
Specialist say it's actually able to track tumors as they move.
Specialists tell us it is very important that you have advanced technology in how you target that radiation and how you apply it to the tumor in order to kill the tumor but protect the patient.
And as new as it is...East Texas is fortunate to already have one. Employees tell us Tyler has one of the fifty first machines not only in the country, but in the world as well.
This multi-million dollar machine cancer fighter is just part of phase one. Phase two will turn the upper floors into an academic center...it will also house the only medical library in East Texas.
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