Accommodation planned for cancer patients

Marcus Guthrie MHICC

Fresh off an Open Day, Mildura Health Icon Cancer Centre’s (MHICC) 10-month-old state-of-the-art event also acted as a fundraiser for a future accommodation service in Thirteenth St.

Mildura Health Foundation is fundraising $3 million to build 10 self-contained apartments in an initiative through the private hospital to house patients undergoing radiation treatment at the MHICC.

The planned build is expected to be a 12-month project that once complete would allow patients who need to travel for care in Mildura to use the accommodation for free or a low cost after state government rebates.

“We have patients feeding in from a 300km radius. From Broken Hill, the Riverland, Robinvale, Ouyen, Swan Hill. This is why we’re building the accommodation,” Mildura Health Private Hospital Chief Executive, Marcus Guthrie, told the Barrier Truth.

“We want to take the stress and the worry out of people’s treatment and know that they can come to this centre from Broken Hill. There’s a place for them to stay for a nominal fee, and it’s right around the corner [from the hospital], so it’s within walking distance.”

Mildura Health CEO, Gerard Op de Coul, says the design and footprint of the apartments has been successfully travelled through the approval process at Mildura Rural City Council.

With the blocks of land set aside, Mildura Health is now going through the final design of the building works, getting ready to put the project out to tender in March with hopes the apartments will be completed by the end of this year.

“People in Broken Hill and Balranald, all those different places, they can come and stay. This is a state-of-the-art facility accommodation designed specifically for people having radiation treatment. There are different needs. It’s not like your normal motel,” Mr Op de Coul says.

“There are places where you can relax, you’ll have outdoor areas, you’ll have a desk if you want to keep on working. It’ll just make it so much easier for people in those towns to come here and stay here and after state government allowances, there’s going to be no out of pocket costs.”

Radiation oncologist Dr Andrew See says having a nurturing environment around patients is an important aspect of receiving care for cancer treatment, whether it be family, friends, or healthcare staff at the facility.

“We have treated quite a few Broken Hill patients who’ve opted to come down, even though Broken Hill patients were initially assigned to go to Adelaide,” Dr See told us.

“If you’ve got your son, your daughter, or your close family in Mildura, to have that nurturing environment around you during what is a very difficult phase in your life is imperative to get those good outcomes. We can now say we offer it.”

Support the Barrier Truth!

We are a small, independently owned newspaper. If you got something from this article, giving something back helps us to continue publishing the truth from the Broken Hill region. Every little bit counts.

More Articles