WA’s public hospital to get robotic surgical system

The Western Australian State Government is to spend $5 million on a state-of-the-art robotic system that will be used to treat prostate cancer.

Known as the da Vinci system, the robot will be the first of its kind in a WA public hospital and will bring the state in line with other health jurisdictions that have a similar metropolitan population.

Set to be established at Fiona Stanley Hospital, the da Vinci system will provide urological procedures, focused on robotic-assisted prostatectomies, partial nephrectomies and radical nephrectomies.

It will also allow for 3D vision, magnification capabilities, and enhanced dexterity, so surgeons are able to manipulate and dissect areas where access is challenging or limited with the human hand.

Compared to traditional techniques, the da Vinci system will result in patients having faster recovery, reduced length of stay in hospital, and faster return to normal day activities.

It is also expected to deliver greater efficiencies due to improved surgical outcomes, and a lower likelihood of subsequent treatments.

While the new robotic surgical service will initially provide for patients within the South Metropolitan Health Service catchment, it is expected that the technology will be available for other WA patients where appropriate.

WA Health Minister Roger Cook said: “We are committed to building a sustainable, world-class health system, and will drive innovation, integration and culture change, and establish ‘Centres of Excellence’ in robotic surgery and clinical innovation to ensure the WA health system will be able to attract and train expert clinicians.

“Our Future Health Research and Innovation Fund commits the government to establishing a $1 billion fund to drive medical research and innovation, including a cancer research plan for the next decade, an innovation hub at Royal Perth Hospital, and incentives for corporate and philanthropic contributions for health and medical research.

“Fiona Stanley Hospital has already employed a urology specialist who has undertaken additional national and international training to lead the robotic surgery program.”


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