The delivery of radiotherapy (RT) requires specialized personnel, equipment, and facilities. It takes a long time to commission new facilities and train the staff to operate them. RT systems, therefore, require careful, long-term planning.
A model has been created, which defines the appropriate rate of use of RT for four major cancer sites in a “typical” North American population. The model has been set up in such a manner that it can be modified not only to fit any specific guidelines for indications for RT that may have been adopted in a particular community, but also the proportion of incident cases in the community that will develop one or more of these indications.
This model provides a reasonable way of assessing the need for RT at the population level and thus provides a rational basis for the long-term planning of radiation services.