CANCER DIAGNOSIS AND TREATMENT
State-owned nuclear medicine maker reopens after crippling shutdown
Up until the safety scare, NTP had generated an annual turnover of R1.3bn
One of SA’s profitable state-owned enterprises (SOE), nuclear medicine producer NTP Radioisotopes, has been reopened after a year-long shutdown that nearly brought the previously unblemished company to its knees. NTP’s products are vital for the diagnosis and treatment of various cancers, and the shortage threatened global supply. Its parent company, the Nuclear Energy Corporation of SA (Necsa), has said that it supplied almost 28% of the world’s medical isotopes used in diagnosis and treatment. Up until the safety scare, NTP had generated an annual turnover of R1.3bn. Necsa said the shutdown of its subsidiary had been caused by “minor safety issues” and “signatures not being done properly”, an explanation that was rejected by the national nuclear regulator and NTP. Necsa did not respond to questions whether its “strategic partnership” deal with Rosatom Healthcare, the healthcare division of its Russian counterpart, for the possible production of nuclear medicine being manufactured ...