Phase 3 (1970 to 1990)
July 1970 saw the completion of the new extensions.
New facilities included two more wards, an outpatients’ department, a medical records department and the Cancer Registry, (one of the most comprehensive in the country).
Computerisation for radiotherapy dose calculation was now recognised as invaluable and the hospital developed its own computer – which filled an entire room!
By 1974 new, purpose-built wards had replaced most of the old huts. A new theatre and a Clinical Research Unit were among other additions. This was the first time that all clinical radiotherapy services for the Mersey Region were under one roof. The first modern simulator also arrived that year - and another would follow ten years later.
The Centre also changed its name - to the Mersey Regional Centre for Radiotherapy and Oncology.
But by the late 1970’s, the unit needed to expand again to meet increasing patient numbers and accommodate new treatment techniques. The Mullard 6 was replaced with a Phillips SL75-14 accelerator and a Dynaray 4 accelerator was also installed.
By 1980 the unit contained three accelerators and one Cobalt unit, plus simulator and imaging services. The decision was made to replace the use of traditional radium with a remote Caesium afterloading system. The first low dose rate Selectron was installed in 1981 with the second in 1982.
Patient numbers, though, were still rising and a decision was taken to undertake at the unit.
Large-scale expansion occurred between1984 and 1987: Two new bunkers, four new accelerators and a new imaging facility – plus a CT scanner, Cyclotron and Gamma camera.
By the 1990s Clatterbridge had five accelerators, two simulators, CT, Gamma camera and MRI with all services housed in purpose-built accommodation. New dose calculation computer facilities were added, capable of multi-plane calculation.
Government changes to the NHS saw the unit become a Trust in 1992. The Centre installed a high dose Selectron that provided even greater benefits for patients by reducing treatment times still further.
Consultant staff also started clinics in over 23 locations across the region.