Patients in the ACT are set to benefit as construction begins on the $46 million dollar Capital Region Cancer Centre. The centre will expand the services currently provided by The Canberra Hospital.
The Capital Region Cancer Centre was one component of a $560 million program to improve access to cancer services and support in regional areas of Australia, and is part of a $2 billion Gillard Government initiative to ensure Australia is a world leader in cancer care.
The total value of the Capital Region Cancer Centre is $46 million, with the Gillard Government contributing $29.7 million and the ACT Government contributing $16.7 million.
Joining Minister Roxon on site for today’s sod turning event was ACT Chief Minister Katy Gallagher, ACT Senator Kate Lundy, Member for Canberra Gai Brodtmann, Member for Fraser Andrew Leigh.
Member for Canberra Gai Brodtmann said treating cancer earlier and more effectively are key priorities for the Gillard Government through health reform.
“Making sure you can receive treatment closer to home means a great deal and when the Capital Region Cancer Centre opens, it will service around half a million people across the ACT and surrounding regions of New South Wales,” Ms Brodtmann said.
Member for Fraser Andrew Leigh believes this centre will mean more working families in the ACT and surrounding regions will have access to world-class services.
“When the Cancer Centre is completed in late 2013, it will improve treatment in the ACT by drawing together and integrating cancer services including chemotherapy, radiation therapy, haematology, immunology and research and teaching programs within a single five-storey building on the Canberra Hospital campus,” Dr Leigh said.
Senator for the ACT Kate Lundy said the funding would also provide a nearby homestyle accommodation meaning cancer patients and their carers travelling to Canberra from surrounding areas have somewhere convenient and pleasant to stay.
“This new cancer centre and many other projects around Australia will ensure the ACT is able to manage increased demand for cancer services over the coming years,” Senator Lundy said.