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Australia : Lifesaving development officially opens in Ballarat.

Ballarat s new $64 million state-of-the-art Regional Integrated Cancer Centre is officially open with Premier Denis Napthine and Minister for Health David Davis attending the celebrations today.

Dr Napthine said the new facility would give about 250,000 people access to better cancer care with the new centre to provide services to people from the Ballarat and Grampians region.

The Ballarat Regional Integrated Cancer Centre (BRICC) is a vital piece of lifesaving infrastructure for regional Victoria, Dr Napthine said.

This development will give people living the region access to the highest levels of care with the addition of new radiation facilities, oncology equipment and diagnostic machines. Importantly, it will allow local people to receive treatment close to home rather than having to travel away from their families and loved ones.

In recent years the survival rates for people diagnosed with cancer have greatly improved and having access to state-of-the-art treatment and diagnosis facilities such as these has played a key role in achieving this.

BRICC also brings together a range of facilities that were previously located at a variety of locations across the city. Having all of these facilities located on a single site will be more convenient for patients and will also have advantages for cancer research and education, Dr Napthine said.

Dr Napthine said BRICC included a fully integrated service for radiation oncology patients, and would provide a dedicated cancer centre for about 800 additional patients in Ballarat.

It includes:

four new radiotherapy bunkers;

two linear accelerators;

a Computerised Tomography (CT) scanner;

four new chemotherapy chairs bringing the total to 16;

oncology consulting/outpatients rooms;

satellite pharmacy;

clinical trials and research facilities;

cancer services administration and education facilities; and

a Wellness Centre.

Mr Davis said BRICC was a patient-friendly and high-quality facility that supported multidisciplinary clinical and supportive care.

The cancer centre has been designed from the inside out with patients and their wellbeing as the primary focus, Mr Davis said.

The design anticipates growth in demand and includes scope to expand radiotherapy services in the future.

The Victorian Coalition Government strongly supports Ballarat Health Services and in 2012-13 increased its funding to $206 million a 13.1 per cent increase since 2010-11, Mr Davis said.

Mr Davis was in Ballarat earlier this month to unveil plans for a new helipad at Ballarat Health Services.

The helipad will be based on top of a new multi-deck car park as part of a $46.4 million expansion of Ballarat Health Services funded by the Coalition Government, Mr Davis said.

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Publication:Mena Report
Date:Jul 19, 2013
Words:433
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