Gillard Government’s Cancer Services Commitment On Show
The Australian Government’s commitment to improved cancer services across the nation was plain for all to see when Parliamentary Secretary for Health and Ageing Catherine King visited the site of the Ballarat Regional Integrated Cancer Centre.
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PDF printable version of Gillard Government’s Cancer Services Commitment On Show (PDF 28 KB)
24 February 2012
The Gillard Government’s commitment to improved cancer services across the nation was plain for all to see today when Parliamentary Secretary for Health and Ageing and Member for Ballarat, Catherine King, visited the site of the Ballarat Regional Integrated Cancer Centre.
Ms King said the significant progress on construction of the centre was clear evidence that the Government was getting on with the job of delivering on its commitment.
Ms King visited the site just over 12 months since the start of construction. Four radiotherapy bunkers are already in place. Full project completion is targetted for late 2012 with first patients receiving treatment in early 2013.
“The funding of this project through our regional cancer centres initiative is an excellent example of the Government’s commitment to expanded cancer services. So, too, is the fact that so much work has already been done to bring this project to fruition,” Ms King said.
“This Government is dedicated to health and hospitals reform and investment. What is happening here and around the nation in projects like this is confirmation of that dedication.”
Ms King said cancer is Australia’s leading burden of disease, but of particular concern is the fact that, for the 30 per cent of Australians living in rural and remote areas, the outcomes are worse than for people living in cities.
“This is unacceptable and we are working to change that,” Ms King said.
“The Government is investing $560 million to build a national network of best practice regional cancer centres and associated accommodation facilities to help close the gap in outcomes for cancer patients in rural and regional Australia.
“Of that amount, more than $42 million is committed to the Ballarat Regional Integrated Cancer Centre with further funding from the Victorian Government.
“This project is here because the community knew the importance of its delivery, and the Federal Government knew the importance of investing in cancer infrastructure projects across regional Australia.
“Here at Ballarat Base Hospital, the initiative will result in a new, integrated regional radiation oncology service for the Grampians Region, which extends from Bacchus Marsh to the South Australian border, an area of 48,000 square kilometres.”
When completed, the centre will consist of two linear accelerators, four radiation oncology bunkers, four new chemotherapy chairs – bringing the total to 16 – and a computed tomography (CT) scanner.
A third linear accelerator will be relocated from St John of God Hospital as a backup machine, with the fourth bunker allowing for future expansion.
For more information contact the Parliamentary Secretary’s office on 02 6277 4230
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