THE long-running campaign of bringing chemotherapy and medical oncology care to Portland will soon become a reality.
Day stay chemotherapy will be offered for the first time next month at Portland District Health (PDH) along with regular face-to-face oncology consultations.
Plans for the day chemotherapy unit started in 2010 following a successful submission for Commonwealth Department of Health funding.
The new service, with a starting date yet to be confirmed, aligns with the Victorian Cancer Action Plan, which aims to deliver care to patients as close to home as possible.
The Portland chemotherapy unit will operate one day per week and provide improved access to oncology and chemotherapy services for district residents.
PDH chief executive officer Chris Giles said the service would allow more Portland district people to receive chemotherapy closer to home.
“While we can’t provide all levels of chemotherapy and will be limited to certain regimes, this will be a terrific additional service for our local community,” Ms Giles said.
“Having safe and effective treatment close to home is the best possible outcome for local people battling cancer,” she added.
Patients will be reviewed initially in Warrnambool, but if suitable, their chemotherapy and follow-up care may be delivered at Portland District Health.
The unit, to be supervised by Warrnambool-based oncologists, has been facilitated by the Barwon South Western Regional Integrated Cancer Service, in collaboration with South West Oncology, South West Healthcare, Barwon Health Cancer Services and Portland District Health.