Local brain cancer patients in Maitland will no longer have to travel to Newcastle for radiation therapy and chemotherapy, thanks to a new specialist integrated cancer centre due to open later this year.
To coincide with the Mark Hughes Foundation Beanie for Brain Cancer Week, specialist doctors and local brain cancer patient and Mark Hughes Ambassador, Jason Crawley, met at GenesisCare's cancer centre.
The centre, adjacent to the new Maitland Hospital will open at the end of the year. This week's on site meeting was not only to showcase the almost completed centre to the community but to also raise brain cancer awareness.
Jason, 43, was diagnosed with brain cancer in December, after experiencing a seizure on Boxing Day and rushed to the hospital. On News Years Eve he received the devastating news that the seizure was caused by brain cancer and was referred to GenesisCare for radiation therapy treatment.
He was treated at GenesisCare, Lake Macquarie. "With the growing population in the Hunter region, it is outstanding that this new centre is being built in Maitland. It means people like myself don't have to travel to Newcastle. The fact that this new centre will have not only radiation therapy, but also chemotherapy, in the one building is fantastic. At the moment many cancer patients in Maitland have to travel to Newcastle and go to two separate locations for these treatments. When you go through treatment for something like brain cancer, there are so many stresses, so to have this new centre where everything is in the one place, will make life a lot easier," Jason said.
On average, approximately 1970 brain cancers are diagnosed each year in Australia, that is roughly one person diagnosed with brain cancer every five hours.
GenesisCare Radiation Oncologist specialising in brain cancer and Mark Hughes Fellow, Dr Mike Fay, has been seeing brain cancer patients from Maitland for over six years.
He will join the team of specialists at the new centre which will offer patients access to radiation therapy, medical oncology, sophisticated imaging, pathology, and allied health services in one custom-built space. It will have capacity to care for over 1500 patients a year.