Independent Member for Shepparton District Suzanna Sheed says she’s pleased the Victorian Health Minister has agreed to advocate for radiotherapy services at Goulburn Valley Health.
“The Garvan Research Institute Report, released two weeks ago, stated a person is more likely to die from cancer within five years of diagnosis, the further they live from a major city,” Ms Sheed said.
“It further highlighted the need for Shepparton to be a base for radiotherapy services,” she said.
This week in Parliament, Ms Sheed formally called on the Health Minister Jill Hennessy to appeal to the Federal Minister for Health and Aged Care, Sussan Ley, to fund the provision of these services at Goulburn Valley Health, complementing the redevelopment of the hospital.
“Albury-Wodonga opened its cancer service in September. It’s a $65mill facility, fully funded by the federal government under Victoria's health pool, despite the fact that it is located across the border in East Albury,” Ms Sheed said.
“Shepparton has a local oncology service, thanks largely to philanthropic donations, which matched half of the Victorian government's contribution. However, at $1.9 million and with only 12 chairs and 2 beds, it is a small service.
“Meanwhile, according to Cancer Victoria statistics to 2011, the number of people diagnosed with cancer in Greater Shepparton alone each year is double that of Wodonga,” Ms Sheed said.
Minister Hennessy agreed to take the matter further.
“I am absolutely more than happy to advocate to the Commonwealth, and explore what more can be done in respect of radiology services at Goulburn Valley Health,” Ms Hennessy said.
Sueanne McCumstie 0428 743 880│firstname.lastname@example.org