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This section contains media releases released a little while ago. Please note that due to the long time when some of these were released images have been removed and some links might no longer work.

December 5, 2005

New West Coast Cancer Initiative

A research project into the care received by West Coast cancer patients could have significant long-term benefits for the people of this region.

The Patient Journey and Clinical Pathway Initiative is a joint project between the West Coast District Health Board, the West Coast division of the Cancer Society and the Buller West Coast Home Hospice Trust.

The $94,237, which has been awarded to the project by the Ministry of Health, has enabled a project co-ordinator to be employed to "map" the journey patients take when diagnosed with cancer.

Project co-ordinator Fiona Doolan-Noble will shortly begin seeking volunteers to have their journey through cancer treatment mapped in order to help health services identify gaps that currently exist in the treatment of cancer patients on the West Coast.

The project will focus on four main objectives

  1. To describe the journey experienced by adult cancer patients living on the West Coast from diagnoses, through to survivorship or into palliative care.
  2. To determine whether the journey was significantly difficult for Maori compared with non-Maori
  3. To discover what current human and information resources Maori and non-Maori identify as useful to them and describe suggested alternative options.
  4. To inform the three project sponsor organisations in the future design of their respective cancer services that will maximise their focus on the patient needs in order to improve better outcomes and experiences.

GP Liaison Officer Carol Atmore said the journey cancer patients in a rural area like the West Coast takes can be different to those living in more urban areas and this project would enable them to have a complete picture of what having treatment for cancer was like for a person in this region.

Dr Atmore said the project would take the first six months of 2006 and would provide the DHB the Cancer Society and the Buller/ West Coast Home Hospice Trust with a starting point to improve further service planning and delivery.

"All of those involved in the project are excited about the future benefits this will have for patients in this region."

For more information please contact
Vikki Carter
Community Liaison Officer
03 768 0499, Extn. 2665
027 245 9595

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