End of an Era

Posted on: December 29th, 2023 by admin 10 Comments
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In mid-2011, following the advice of Philip van Zyl of Get Social Media, I started writing a regular weekly blog to draw traffic to our website. We decided to use one of three different content types – thought leadership, company news, or industry news – for each week’s story. The first blog posted on 15 August 2011 was entitled “To screen or not to screen? That is the question!” and was a response to a recent paper published in the British Medical Journal that called into question the life-saving benefits of mammographic screening.

In the intervening years I have brought out a blog every Friday – missing just two in 2022 when I was hiking in Tuscany – which comes to a total of 644 stories, encompassing more than 250,000 words. I have derived significant benefit, and indeed pleasure, because each story has required background research, and it’s been my hope that readers of the blogs have learned something interesting as well. At this time of the year, I’d like to highlight a few of those articles.

In September 2011, I reviewed the Pulitzer Prize-winning book The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer by Siddhartha Mukherjee, in which he tells the story of Atossa, the ancient queen of Persia (seen left, with King Darius), whose breast cancer was surgically removed. Then in July 2012, CapeRay celebrated the award of the ISO 13485 certificate for the company’s quality assurance system, as well as the CE mark for our first medical device, the Pandia digital X-ray camera.

In November 2015, we launched a clinical trial at Groote Schuur Hospital of Aceso, our dual-modality product that combined digital mammography and automated breast ultrasound in a single system. Two years later, in 2017, we celebrated the publication of our results in Diagnostics (seen below right), the granting of a United States patent for our novel dual-modality design, and finally the award of the CE mark for Aceso.

In December 2021, I explained that although there are 52 weeks in a year, there were 53 Fridays in some years – 2016 and 2021 – which meant that in those years I published 53 blogs. Well, like all good things which must come to an end, this blog will be my last. Our company’s principal shareholder, the Industrial Development Corporation of South Africa (IDC), has asked me to find a buyer for CapeRay’s assets and so this will be my focus in the coming months. I’d like to thank you, the readers of these weekly blogs, for your positive feedback and support over the past 12½ years.

10 Responses

  1. Margie Williams says:

    Dear Kit
    I’m sure you feel somewhat sad at this time. We’ve joked about ‘The’ blog for 12 and a half years, but I’ve have always found the ones I actually read, very interesting and enlightening. You put so much effort into it and I’m sure there are several true followers who will miss it on a Friday.
    Wishing you success in finding a buyer and more time for you to enjoy with Joan in your lovely home in Pringle Bay.

  2. Ard den Heeten says:

    Thanks Kit for all the very interesting blogs you posted. It kept you obviously young of mind and young of heart.
    I often shared your messages with others. Always worthwhile.

  3. johan walters says:

    … gee whizz… Good luck with the next phase Kit… hope you have more good breaks than you got from the last one….

  4. Melissa Hill says:

    Dear Kit,
    Thanks for your dedication to keeping the breast imaging world informed. I appreciated your perspective on current events and looked forward to your weekly blog.
    Best wishes on the next chapter.

  5. Ralph Highnam says:

    Kit, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed your posts over the last years, thank you for helping spread knowledge in a concise, fair and informative manner,


  6. Andrew du Toit says:

    Always a blog to look forward to. Thanks for your considerable effort. Will miss it! Andrew.

  7. Gary Kantor says:

    Dear Kit
    I will really miss both the content and style of your weekly contributions. Crisply written, topical, well illustrated, easy to read and covering so much that’s of interest to people in and outside the scope of CapeRay and breast imaging. A model for how to present science that I’ve learned a lot from.
    All the best to you for current and future endeavours.

  8. Ed Blignaut says:

    Hi Kit,
    Congratulations on a superb production over such a long period. I have found the articles extremely absorbing and enlightening and must confess to diving into the weekly letter a priority.
    Best wishes for the next (?) phase

  9. Hi Kit,
    Thank you for gracing our inboxes with your blog so diligently for so many years. It was always well-written, well-researched, informative, and thought provoking. Its absence will leave a much larger hole than the one less email in our inboxes every week.
    Good luck with your further adventures.
    Best regards,

  10. Kit Vaughan says:

    Dear Margie, Ard, Johan, Melissa, Ralph, Andrew, Gary and Ed

    Many thanks to all of you for your positive feedback — and support of the blog these past dozen years!

    May I wish all of you everything of the best in 2024.