Structure and Activities of Nuclear Medicine in Kuwait



The practice of nuclear medicine in Kuwait began in 1965 as a clinic for treating thyroid diseases. The practice developed gradually and until 1981 when the Faculty of Medicine established the Division of Nuclear Medicine in the Department of Radiology, which later became a separate department responsible for establishing and managing the practice in all hospitals of Kuwait. In 1987, a nuclear medicine residency program was begun and it is administered by Kuwait Institute for Medical Specializations originally as a 4-year but currently as a 5-year program. Currently there are 11 departments in the ministry of health hospitals staffed by 49 qualified attending physicians, mostly the diplomats of the Kuwait Institute for Medical Specializations nuclear medicine residency program, 4 academic physicians, 2 radiopharmacists, 2 physicists, and 130 technologists. These departments are equipped with 33 dual-head gamma cameras, 10 SPET/CT, 5 PET/CT, 2 cyclotrons, 1 breast-specific gamma imaging, 1 positron-emitting mammography, 10 thyroid uptake units, 8 technegas machines, 7 PET infusion systems, and 8 treadmills. Activities of nuclear medicine in Kuwait include education and training, clinical service, and research. Education includes nuclear medicine technology program in the Faculty of Allied Health Sciences, the 5-year residency program, medical school teaching distributed among different modules of the integrated curriculum with 14 didactic lecture, and other teaching sessions in nuclear medicine MSc program, which run concurrently with the first part of the residency program. The team of Nuclear Medicine in Kuwait has been active in research and has published more than 300 paper, 11 review articles, 12 book chapters, and 17 books in addition to 36 grants and 2 patents. A PhD program approved by Kuwait University Council would begin in 2016.