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Equipment removal a delicate task at closed cancer center

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) – Indiana University officials are seeking expert advice before removing equipment at a closed cancer treatment center because of low levels of radioactivity.

The Herald-Times reports that some of the equipment from the IU Health Proton Therapy Center and IU Cyclotron will require special handling and disposal because of the radiation.

The proton therapy center opened in 2004 with cutting-edge technology and treated nearly 2,100 patients over the next decade. But advances in cancer treatment, declining insurance reimbursement rates and old equipment prevented the center from being consistently profitable.

The center and cyclotron had a $3.5 million deficit for fiscal year 2013, and the university incurred a $20 million loss for construction and about a $15 million loss in receivables from the center.

The facility closed in December.