Cancer Connections

Beating Cancer in the Highlands ... This column is brought to you regularly by the Southern Highlands Cancer Leadership Committee and is first published in the Lifestyle section of the Southern Highland News. It is designed to inform everybody of matters relating to cancer in our local community and the wider society. We aim to focus on local news, forthcoming events, services and other cancer issues.

Cancer Connections - November 2014

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Cancer Centre wins award

The Southern Highlands Cancer Centre has been recognised for its outstanding work in caring for cancer patients. At “A Night with the Stars” on October 31st, held at Mittagong RSL to present the Southern Highlands Business Awards for Excellence, the Centre, which is a part of the Private Hospital, took out the award in the category “Excellence in a Health Facility”. When the award was presented to Dr Stephen Della-Fiorentina, the oncologist at the Centre, he made particular mention of the achievements of the team as a whole and went on to pay tribute especially to the leadership of Jo Pearson, its Nursing Unit Manager. By way of demonstrating their strong teamwork, all of the Centre staff who were at the awards dinner went up on stage for the presentation.


Pictured above : The team from the Cancer Centre, with Dr Stephen Della-Fiorentina and Jo Pearson (centre) holding the award trophy.

Tobacco is readily available

It’s easier to buy tobacco than to obtain medications. Odd, isn’t it ? When you remember that medications are meant to aid our health but tobacco ends up killing one out of every two of its users. Tobacco outlets seem to be everywhere : supermarkets, newsagencies, petrol stations, convenience stores, you name it. Almost 10,000 of them in NSW; four times as many as there are pharmacies. The sale of medicines is tightly regulated; not so for cigarettes. There are no legal limits on where tobacco can be sold, who can sell it and when (aside from a ban on mobile sellers and market stalls). No licence is required and there’s no cap on the total number of outlets.

Cancer Council NSW has a vision for change by asking the State government to address the sale of tobacco, thereby supporting people who are trying to quit and encouraging young people to live smoke free. Perhaps a positive licensing scheme might be one way to improve the situation.

Men’s Health Month in November

The free information sessions on men’s health, presented by local medical specialists, continue for the rest of November. These events are being held at the Moss Vale Golf Club, from 6.00 sharp to 7.30pm on Thursday evenings. The speakers for the concluding sessions are : Dr Leicester (orthopaedic surgeon) Nov 20th; and Dr Wikramanyaka (bowel specialist) Nov 27th. All men and women are welcome. For further information, telephone the organiser, Tom Carroll, on 0419482208 or email carroll.tom@gmail.com

Community Service Award

I should also record here that I was one of the people nominated for an award in the category “Excellence in Community Service”. I saw that as really a recognition of what has been achieved by the whole of the Southern Highlands Cancer Leadership Committee. While I was not successful, my nomination itself is a most welcome recognition of the work we do as a volunteer body. The award, however, went, most deservedly, to the Clown Doctors for their work as part of the Humour Foundation. The choice of winners was fitting indeed in view of the death this year, from cancer, of Dr Peter Spitzer (aka Dr Fruit-Loop). Peter achieved so much for children, and for us all, by spreading his message that “Laughter is the best medicine”.

Coming Events

• Movember is to raise vital funds and awareness for men’s health, with a specific focus on prostate cancer and depression in men.
• November is also Lung Health Awareness Month. How are your lungs ?
• International Volunteer Day is Dec. 5th. Think of how volunteers help us all.
• “Venice Carnivale” for Can Assist, Thurs. Nov. 20th at Bendooley Estate
• Men’s Health events each Thursday in November. Please see details above.
• Can Assist meeting, Thurs. Dec. 11th, 10am at the old Bowral Hospital

Grahame Hackett (Chair, SHCLC)
0407 234 780 or info@sh-cancerconnect.com.au


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