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 2018

Wednesday, November 21, 2018




Relay For Life Southern Highlands
Relay 2018 proved to be a successful fundraising venture for Cancer Council’s multiple services in support of cancer patients. Despite unfavourable weather and the expectation of a lower attendance, the October event still drew 600 participants who carried on the strong tradition of our district’s backing for such activities. With charities right across the board facing reduced incomes in difficult economic times and cost-of-living pressures, it was heartening that $135,000 has already been achieved and further funds are still being received. The total was boosted by the generous donation on behalf of the Sharp family. Monies raised go to fund a number of local initiatives provided by Cancer Council along with their statewide research program on the causes and treatment of many different types of cancer.




Community Hospice
At last the Wingecarribee Shire Council has given approval to the DA submitted for the Community Hospice which is planned to be built at 104-106 Bowral Street, Bowral. A most significant milestone on the journey has now been passed. After such a fraught process in getting this proposal through Council, the Board of the Southern Highlands Community Hospice Ltd will now be able to proceed with their immense task of realising their dream. What was always envisaged was to create specialist palliative care facilities by operating a 10-bed inpatient purpose-built hospice for those who could no longer be cared for in their own home. What is planned will be a welcome addition to existing medical and nursing capabilities in the Wingecarribee. The AGM for members of Southern Highlands Community Hospice Ltd will be held, 6.00 for 6.30 pm, Thursday, November 22, at Annesley, Bowral.

Palliative Care Services
While recognising the importance of progress towards a Community Hospice, we should also acknowledge at the same time what wonderful palliative care services are presently available in the Southern Highlands. For patients with a terminal cancer diagnosis, and for others faced with equally severe medical conditions, the quality of end-of-life care being provided here is exceptional. Thanks to the outstanding work of Mira Glavan, Clinical Nurse Consultant in Palliative Care, nursing and volunteer services in our district continue to be provided at a high standard. Their work is supported by doctors who specialise in this field; the equipment needed to help maintain a person in their home is also organised. Doctors and nurses play a crucial role at this time in the critical issue of appropriate medication. However, when care becomes necessary on a 24/7 basis for a person living alone, staying at home is no longer an option. This is such a time when the bricks-and-mortar hospice is needed.

Coming Events
• Movember continues this month in aid of men’s health, particularly to deal with prostate cancer and depression
• SH Community Hospice AGM, 6.30pm, Thursday, Nov. 22 at Annesley
• Men’s Health forum concludes Monday, Nov. 26, 6pm at St Jude’s Auditorium, Bowral
• Southern Highlands Cancer Support Group, 10am, Tues. Nov. 27, RSVP Katie
• Breast Cancer Support Group, Mittagong RSL, 10am-12 noon, Nov. 28

• December is Decembeard : raising awareness of bowel cancer. See the website www.decembeard.org.au/

• Please note : the Southern Highlands branch of Can Assist will not be holding a meeting in December or January. The work of branch executive members will be carried on as usual. The next meeting will be on February 12th.

Grahame Hackett (Chair, Southern Highlands Cancer Leadership Committee)
0407 234 780 or info@sh-cancerconnect.com.au


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Cancer Connections - June 2017

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

“Connecting the Future” seminar success

This event was organised for Palliative Care Week by the Southern Highlands Community Hospice committee. Speakers included Dr Yvonne McMaster OAM, the retired palliative care specialist who initiated the “Push for Palliative” campaign, and Jane Mahony, a local senior nurse consultant in the field. An audience numbering about 80 heard informative presentations from both and later gained an insight into current planning for the hospice building to be constructed in Bowral. The draft drawings for the building were on display and stimulated much discussion.

Visit of the Premier to Bowral
June 6 saw the visit by Premier Gladys Berejiklian to the Southern Highlands. A public meeting of 200 locals was hosted by Wollondilly MP Jai Rowell at the Bradman Museum and provided an opportunity for the Premier to speak personally about how she saw her role and to tell us how much she admired all the community work going on in our district.
As I had hoped, I did have an opportunity, after the formal items were over, to speak with the Premier as she mingled. Naturally I wanted to raise the issue of greater resources for palliative care and briefly touched on the main points why this was badly needed. The Premier clearly understands the reasons anyway and nodded as I spoke before she promptly replied : “Grahame, watch this space”.

Announcement on palliative care
Our Cancer Leadership Committee members certainly did “watch this space” and were soon able to see that Gladys had kept her word. On Monday June 12 the NSW Government announced that a record $100 million would be spent over the next four years to increase palliative care services. Out of the numerous benefits which will flow from this extra funding I will just select one : this will mean a much needed improvement in the provision of palliative care throughout regional and rural NSW, areas which have been substantially less well serviced so far. So there is some cause for a sense of achievement among all those who supported this issue : volunteers for Cancer Council NSW; those who “signed the pledge”; those who backed Dr McMaster’s campaign; and ultimately those State MPs from all parties who saw there must be a better way to care for people with a life-limiting illness.
For the latest details on what the Government has announced, please go to our 'News & Events' tab above for the item "Premier's visit to Bowral".



New Car for GAPS drivers !
Here’s a big boost to our free GAPS service to cancer patients – the one which sees those dedicated volunteers driving cancer patients to consultations and treatment and using their own cars to do it. Cancer Council NSW have come good on their promise to provide GAPS drivers with a brand new car. From now on, the “first cab off the rank” you will see transporting a patient – and sometimes the trips are to Liverpool or Concord and back – will be the Toyota RAV4 with its Cancer Council logo. Here is another way in which our community benefits directly from raising funds at events like “Relay for Life” and the hugely successful “Dance for Cancer”.



PAWS Pet Therapy celebration

A dinner will be held by the PAWS Pet Therapy enthusiasts on Saturday July 22 at Centennial Vineyards. Details are on this website under the News & Events tab. This is an innovative organisation of dog owners who take their beautiful pets into hospitals and nursing homes to bring cheer to so many. They can always accommodate more pet lovers so if you and your dog can volunteer, ring Sharon Stewart on 4681 0499.


Coming Events
• June is Bowel Cancer Awareness month
• July is Dry July

• Can Assist meeting Tuesday, July 11, 10am at BDCU, Bowral

• PAWS Pet Therapy function, Centennial Vineyards, July 22, 5-10pm. Details above.
• Southern Highlands Cancer Support Group, 10am, Tues. July 25 RSVP Katie on 4862 9400
• Breast Cancer Support Group, Mittagong RSL, 10am-12 noon, Wed. July 26

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


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Cancer Connections - May 2017

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Cancer Services Directory 2017 now available

Did you miss out on a copy of this year’s Directory ? Don’t worry. A hard copy of the booklet can be obtained from the Cancer Centre within the Southern Highlands Private Hospital. As was done last year, the booklet also can be flipped to the other end to give a copy of the Health Guide as well. So, two for one. Our theme for this issue of the Directory is the important topic of palliative care with a number of articles specially written for the theme. You will also find information there about the efforts being made across the state to increase the resources allocated to this field. For those who like to access information online, our Directory is now also available as a Fairfax special publication. You will find a link to it on the Directory page of this website or it can be viewed at the Fairfax site : click here  


‘I Care for Palliative Care’ meeting 
Over 50 people attended the Bowral ‘I Care for Palliative Care’ meeting which was convened by Margaret Mogg. Those present heard from Jane Mahony, a local palliative care nurse now in private practice, who explained palliative care and how important it is. Carolyn Grenville from Cancer Council’s Sydney office outlined what the campaign was about and why NSW needs more specialist doctors and specialist nurses in the palliative care field and culturally appropriate Aboriginal services. Matt Aiken, a local resident, spoke movingly of the help he and his wife received from LHD palliative care staff when his wife had terminal breast cancer. Many more pledges of support for palliative care were signed on the day. The MP for Wollondilly, Jai Rowell, was unwell and could not attend but the call for more resources in this field has been conveyed to him. The link to the video clip that was shown at the meeting is www.canact.com.au/palliativecare

“Connecting the Future” seminar

Again on the same theme, this event has been organised for Palliative Care Week (May 21-27) by the Southern Highlands Community Hospice committee. Speakers will include Dr Yvonne McMaster OAM, retired palliative care specialist, and Jane Mahony, a senior nurse consultant, Palliative and Aged Care Consultancy Services. The venue will be St Jude’s Auditorium, Bendooley Street, Bowral, and it takes place on Tuesday, May 23, 9.30am-12pm. Entry is free but book, for catering purposes, at one of the Hospice shops or online at www.shchospice.org.au/news


Coming Events
• Dance for Cancer, Mittagong RSL, 6-11.45pm, May 19. Tickets must be purchased at the Club or by calling 4872 6700.
• National Palliative Care Week will be May 21-27.

• “Connecting the Future” Palliative Care Week forum, St Jude’s, 9.30am-12pm, May 23

• Southern Highlands Cancer Support Group meet at SH Private Hospital, 10-11.30 am, Tues. May 23. RSVP Katie on 4862 9400
• Breast Cancer Support Group, Mittagong RSL, 10am-12 noon, Wed. May 24
• Biggest Morning Tea (BMT) will be held on Thurs. May 25 or other dates nearby
• Southern Highlands Cancer Centre’s BMT is Fri. May 26, 10am-2pm
• World No Tobacco Day is always May 31
• June is Bowel Cancer Awareness month

• Can Assist meeting June 13th, 10am. Note new venue : BDCU, Bong Bong St, Bowral.


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


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Cancer Connections - August 2014

Friday, August 22, 2014

Cancer Council grant for the Southern Highlands
It is important to support breast cancer patients by monitoring for the early detection of lymphoedema following treatment. The Southern Highlands Cancer Leadership Committee has just been awarded a grant of $7,150 which will fund the software required for two years’ operation of an apparatus to monitor for lymphoedema. A Breast Care nurse and a lymphoedema specialist trained in using the monitor are available at the Cancer Centre. Early detection of this condition post-operation leads to better outcomes and may reduce the long term effects caused by a late diagnosis. Following the great result of the 2014 Relay For Life held in the Southern Highlands, our committee had applied for the grant from Cancer Council NSW and we were delighted to be successful.

Cancer Centre Information Session

On Tuesday September 16th staff at the Southern Highlands Private Hospital will provide a valuable presentation for any cancer patient or future patient, their family members, and also carers. This instructive presentation, running from 10.30am til noon, will give insight into the treatment process, what to expect, and introduces the trained professionals who make up the support team. All the services available to assist patients will be outlined. Anyone interested in attending should ring Jo Pearson, Nurse Unit Manager, on 4862 9470. Full details are shown on this website under the “News and Events” tab.

Pictured after the Information Session held in July (L to R) : Richard Vines, who spoke to the meeting about Rare Cancers Australia; Jo Pearson; Peter Coupland, who helped present the session.

Daffodil Day, Friday, August 22nd
The golden daffodil, so well-identified with Cancer Council, was chosen as the symbol of hope for all affected by cancer because of its reputation as a hardy annual flower, pushing its way through the earth after a long winter to herald the return of spring, new life, vitality and growth. As one of the first flowers of an approaching spring, the daffodil symbolises rebirth and new beginnings. To Cancer Council, the daffodil represents hope for a cancer-free future. This year the wonderful band of volunteers will be out in our community raising funds on Daffodil Day, Friday, August 22nd. Some collections may take place on nearby days.

New Blood Cancer Support Group
A support group for patients and carers affected by blood cancer will be commencing this September. If you are interested, please contact Emily Barry at the Leukaemia Foundation by telephoning 4222 0602. It is anticipated that the group’s inaugural meeting will be held at the Southern Highlands Private Hospital on Wednesday, 17th September.

Community Hospice forum
Do you have questions you would like answered about death and dying, but you've never known who to ask ? An information forum organised by Southern Highlands Community Hospice Inc. called the “Dying To Know Day” will be held at the Mittagong RSL Club, 10am to 3pm on Saturday, August 23rd. Admission is free. For full details, see the item under the “News and Events” tab on this website or visit the hospice website at http://shchospice.org.au

Changes to Medicare Local
What is going to happen in 2015 to South West Sydney Medicare Local which covers our district ? A session entitled “Future of Medicare Local” will be held at Mittagong RSL, 11am-12.30pm, Tuesday, August 26th. Telephone Amy Humphries 1300 179 765.

Coming Events
• Daffodil Day raising funds for Cancer Council, Friday, August 22
• Community Hospice “Dying To Know Day”, Mittagong RSL, 10am-3pm Aug. 23
• “Future of Medicare Local”, Mittagong RSL, 11am-12.30pm, Aug. 26
• Can Assist Annual Branch meeting, Thurs. Sept. 11th, 10.30am at Pepperfield
• Cancer Centre Information Session at SH Private Hospital, Sept 16
• Blood Cancer Support Group at SH Private Hospital, September 17
• “Bounce Forward” program at SH Private Hospital, Sept. 20-21
• YWCA Encore program commences at Henley Brae, Wed. October 15. Contact Mandy Lawson on 4868 3246 or 0438 68 3246.

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


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Cancer Connections - July 2014

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Prostate cancer outside the cities

Research recently published in the “Medical Journal of Australia” shows that men with prostate cancer in regional and rural areas of NSW have significantly lower survival rates than their city dwelling counterparts. The study looked at the geographic differences in 10-year survival rates for prostate cancer in NSW and found that men living in rural NSW are 32% more likely to die from prostate cancer than men from the city. The good news was that, in the last two decades, 10-year survival rates have increased from 57% to 84%. However the inequality between regional and city survival rates has not reduced.

Why ? Some possible reasons : men from regional and rural areas are less likely to get diagnosed; or less access to services; or a culture of self reliance and independence among men in rural communities leads to less use of available services. All the details of the research report are available, just click here.


Residents in the Southern Highlands who seek information or support on prostate matters can contact our local support group by ringing its organiser, Tom Carroll, on 0419482208.

Daffodil Day, Friday, August 22nd - Show You Care
The golden daffodil, so well-identified with Cancer Council, was chosen as the symbol of hope for all affected by cancer because of its reputation as a hardy annual flower, pushing its way through the earth after a long winter to herald the return of spring, new life, vitality and growth. As one of the first flowers of an approaching spring, the daffodil symbolises rebirth and new beginnings. To Cancer Council, the daffodil represents hope for a cancer-free future. This year the wonderful band of volunteers will be out in our community raising funds on Daffodil Day, Friday, August 22nd. Some collections may take place on nearby days.



Plain packaging of cigarettes is working
An article published on June 24th in the Sydney Morning Herald showed that, contrary to recent misinformation from the tobacco industry, Australia’s world-first introduction of plain packaging is already leading to health benefits. The author, Professor David Currow, is Chief Cancer Officer and CEO, Cancer Institute NSW. He listed two purposes of this long-term public health policy : to reduce the attractiveness of smoking to consumers – most importantly young people – and to increase the visibility of graphic health warnings.

Prof. Currow reported that, since the introduction of plain packaging in 2012, there has been solid, peer-reviewed and transparent evidence of its effectiveness. This is seen in the significantly greater numbers of people calling the Quitline after the introduction of plain packaging and in the increase in smokers' urgency to quit. This is in line with figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics showing a decline in tobacco sales. The policy, however, is a measure designed to work as part of a comprehensive tobacco control strategy and its full efficacy should be observed over time.

Community Hospice forum

Do you have questions you would like answered about death and dying, but you've never known who to ask ? Here is advance notice of an information forum being organised by Southern Highlands Community Hospice Inc. They have come up with a striking title : “Dying To Know Day” and it will be held at the Mittagong RSL Club, 10am to 3pm on Saturday, August 23rd. Full details are provided in our News & Events item click here, or visit the hospice website at http://shchospice.org.au


Coming Events
• “Dry July” is a month for raising funds for families with cancer
• “Call to Arms” in July - football teams support action against cancer
• Jeans for Genes Day is on Friday, August 1st
• Can Assist meeting, Thurs., August 14th, 10am at the old Bowral Hospital.
• Daffodil Day will raise funds for Cancer Council on Friday, August 22nd
• Community Hospice “Dying To Know Day”, Mittagong RSL, 10am-3pm Aug. 23rd

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


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Cancer Connections - June 2014

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Can you spare a little time ?
Currently some opportunities exist for people to volunteer to help cancer patients by means of our GAPS program. That’s the General and Practical Support service which is available throughout the Wingecarribee Shire to people undergoing cancer treatment. Training for volunteers will be provided by Cancer Council NSW. Some of the ways you can assist include preparing light snacks; shopping; respite for a carer; and transport to medical appointments or to connect with the Patient Transport Service taking patients to Campbelltown. Whether you are helping a patient or their carer, your assistance will be greatly appreciated by people who are facing a most serious challenge to their health. If you would like to take part, telephone Tina Hunt at Cancer Council NSW on (02) 4223 0200.





Pictured above are some of our team of GAPS volunteers (L to R) : Suzy Kennon, Jann Wadsworth, Aurelia Grigore-Reid, Chris Roode, Wanda Lach, Julianne Halpin, Belinda Lamb (Cancer Council), Judith Brooks, Joan Harrison (GAPS Co-ordinator),
Di Hinton, John Hinton. In front : Nick Goodall.


Relay For Life 2014
In the wash up to this year’s immensely successful Relay For Life in the Southern Highlands, the tally for funds raised has now passed the $286,000 mark – a fantastic achievement and proof once again of how generously the Southern Highlands community will respond to a good program and a worthwhile cause. (A report on Relay was given in our Cancer Connections blog for May – access via the tab above.) Our keynote speaker on that cold, wet day, Barbara Williams, was both entertaining and inspiring as she described the excitement she had in forming a breast cancer dragon boat team and competing at regattas. A reminder that the full text of what she had to say can now be read on the News & Events section of this website just click here.

New members for the committee
The Southern Highlands Cancer Leadership Committee has recently benefited from the addition of a number of local health professionals who have come on board. We shall now have the added expertise brought by : Peter Coupland and Mel Kalde, who are both employed as Social Workers at the Southern Highlands Cancer Centre; Mira Glavan, Clinical Nurse Consultant, Palliative Care, from the Wingecarribee Community Health Centre; and also rejoining the committee at its next meeting will be Jonathan Purvis who was this committee’s first chairman and, more recently, the co-chair of the successful local Relay For Life 2014. A full listing of the membership of our committee can be viewed under the “About Us” tab above.

Concerns about the co-payments issue
At its June meeting, a number of committee members expressed their concerns about some of the Federal Budget’s changes in the health area. Of particular concern were the proposals to charge a co-payment for GP visits and some medical tests, which, if passed by Parliament, will place extra burdens on cancer patients who already face financial difficulties due to their illness and which will, as a result, create an even greater demand for assistance from such organisations as Can Assist. The Federal Government’s stated intention to restructure in 2015 the pattern of Medicare Locals was also viewed as a backward step, in view of the fact that the Medicare Local for our district was making real advances in improving primary health care across a range of medical fields.

Coming Events
• Red Aussie Apple Day, June 18, to raise awareness of bowel cancer
• “Dry July” is a month for raising funds for families with cancer
• “Call to Arms” in July - football teams support action against cancer
• Can Assist meeting, Thurs., July 10th, 10am at the old Bowral Hospital.
• Community Hospice “Dying To Know Day”, Mittagong RSL, 10am-3pm August 23rd

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



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Cancer Connections - May 2013

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Biggest Morning Tea 
Southern Highlands Cancer Centre will hold their morning tea on Thursday, May 23rd which is the nominal date set for this year. But groups can hold one on any morning around that date. The BIGGEST Morning Tea at Burrawang School of Arts is on Saturday, May 25th. The Southern Highland News carried an extensive list of BMTs planned for the district in its issue of Wednesday, May 15th. Maybe this means you get to go to more than one event ! These are fun activities and are great fundraisers for Cancer Council. Because every cup counts.


About the Southern Highlands Cancer Leadership Committee
Following the success of our Cancer Services Directory for 2013, people have asked that we say a little about what we do. The Southern Highlands Cancer Leadership Committee (SHCLC) is an independent committee of local volunteers committed to improving services for cancer patients and raising awareness of the support which is available to them and their carers. The committee, which meets each month, works closely with the Southern Highlands Cancer Centre, health professionals, members of volunteer services, support groups, program providers and cancer charities within the Wingecarribee.

To help spread the information about cancer issues to patients and to all in the community, the committee provides the material for the annual Directory published by Southern Highland News. The most recent step taken to make knowledge of cancer services and all these matters more accessible to people has been the creation of this website. The design of our website was funded by Cancer Council NSW who strongly support the committee’s activities. The column “Cancer Connections” which we write for Southern Highland News is printed on the 3rd Wednesday of each month and then provides the material for this blog. (You can find out more about our committee by clicking on the "About Us" tab above.)


Community Hospice winter fundraiser

This will be a Wearable Art Fashion Parade at Annesley on Thursday, June 13th, 5.30-7.30pm. The event will feature Margaret Connor’s creations which will be available for purchase after the parade. Book early. Tickets from the Hospice shop in High street, Bowral. Full details are on the Hospice website at http://shchospice.org.au/.


BowelCare kits available
With 1 in 12 Australians diagnosed by age 85, bowel cancer is the second largest cause of cancer deaths in Australia. The good news however is that, if detected early, 90% of cases can be treated successfully. So, why not “Get checked”. BowelCare kits are still available from local pharmacies until June 1st; the last day for returning kits for pathology testing is June 15th.

Cancer Services Directory now online
If you were not able to get your copy of our Directory for the Southern Highlands, the whole contents of the booklet can now be obtained from this website. This year’s booklet, which featured special articles on men’s health issues, can be easily downloaded as a pdf file. Just click on the Directory tab above.

World No Tobacco Day, May 31st
Each year, about 6 million people worldwide die as a result of tobacco usage. 600,000 of those victims are non-smokers.

Please note : The Gatsby Dinner Dance announced for June 28th has had to be cancelled due to insufficient time to have all arrangements in place for the event.

Coming Events
• BowelCare kits available at local pharmacies until June 1st.
• National Volunteer Week, May 13th – 19th
• Palliative Care Week, May 19th – 25th
• Biggest Morning Teas will occur on Thursday, May 23rd or on nearby dates
• Biggest Morning Tea at SH Cancer Centre, Thurs. May 23rd.
• Biggest Morning Tea at Burrawang School of Arts, Sat. May 25, 9am-12pm
• May 31st is always World No Tobacco Day.
• June is Bowel Cancer Awareness Month
  Bowral Men's Shed celebrates 10th Anniversary, at the Shed, 11.30 am, June 12.
• Can Assist meeting, Thurs, June 13th, 10am at the old Bowral Hospital
• Wearable Art Fashion Parade at Annesley, for Community Hospice, Thurs, June 13 .

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



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Cancer Connections - February 2013

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Cancer Services Directory 2013
The issue of the Southern Highland News out on Wednesday February 27th will contain your copy of the Southern Highlands Cancer Services Directory for 2013. With articles this time specially focussing on men’s health, this 5th edition will, as always, list the services available locally to assist cancer patients and their families. The listings are updated each year so that the information is as accurate as we can make it. Thanks are due to Southern Highland News and all the Directory’s sponsors who have made the publication possible.

Jo Pearson wins “Nurse of the Year” Award
The Rotary Club of Bowral-Mittagong have named their “Nurse of the Year” and the award has gone to Jo Pearson, a foundation member of our Southern Highlands Cancer Leadership Committee. This year the Rotary Club devoted their vocational award to the nursing profession and the names of many fine nurses were put forward. Jo Pearson, the Nursing Unit Manager at the Southern Highlands Cancer Centre, was nominated by our Committee and also by the Southern Highlands Private Hospital. At a ceremony on Tuesday, 19th February, Club president, Ray Williams, presented Jo with the perpetual trophy and an individual trophy for her to retain. The modest recipient was gracious in accepting this well-deserved award.



Patient Transport Service
One group of guys already well aware of health issues are those who turn out as volunteer drivers for the Patient Transport Service. The bus, provided by Cancer Council NSW, takes cancer patients from the Southern Highlands who require transport to the Macarthur Cancer Therapy Centre at Campbelltown for treatment or to see a doctor or specialist. Bookings are made either by telephoning the Cancer Council Southern Region office in Wollongong on 4223 0200 or by speaking with the staff at the Macarthur Centre. We should pay special recognition to all those drivers. It’s thanks to their readiness to give their time that this bus service has been so successful.

Prostate Support Group
The recently formed Southern Highlands Prostate Support Group held a most successful information evening on February 5th. More than 50 attended to learn more about prostate issues and were rewarded with two instructive presentations. Local physiotherapist Lucy Forbes stressed the importance of maintaining the strength of the pelvic floor muscle, while Dr. Nestor Lalak (a Bowral urologist) spoke knowledgeably about prostate problems, methods of treatment, and post-operative issues. Both speakers have strongly supported the formation of this group and were happy to answer numerous questions that were asked. For more information contact Tom Carroll on 0419482208 or email carroll.tom747@gmail.com

    

     Pictured : Dr Nestor Lalak speaking at the information evening

“Live Well Now” Program
This valuable program of six sessions spread over two weeks provides the means to find peace while dealing with the stresses of living with an illness. Each 3½ hour session, conducted by Dr Louella Crawford, is held at the SH Private Hospital and the first commences on March 2nd. Cost is $240; bookings close February 25th. For more information or to book, contact Jo Pearson on 4862 9472.

Hospice Week events
Southern Highlands Community Hospice Committee has announced its schedule of events for Hospice Week 2013. While the "week" is officially February 25th to March 4th, the events have been spread a little wider than that to accommodate all the various activities planned. The current schedule is set out in the “News and Events” section of this website with details of the people to contact if you would like to attend any of the events or you can visit the hospice committee’s own website at http://shchospice.org.au/

Coming Events
• Cancer Services Directory will be issued with SH News, Wed. Feb. 27th
• Teal Ribbon Day, Feb. 27th - Ovarian Cancer Australia
• SH Hospice Week is February 25th to March 4th. See details above.
• “Live Well Now” Program commences Sat. March 2nd. See above.
• Can Assist meeting, 10am Thurs, March 14th at the old Bowral Hospital
• Breast Cancer Support Group dinner, March 22nd. Visit www.bcsg.info/

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



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Cancer Connections - January 2013

Friday, January 18, 2013

Cancer Services Directory 2013
Your copy of the Southern Highlands Cancer Services Directory for 2013 will be available in the issue of the Southern Highland News on Wednesday, February 27th. In this 5th edition of the publication, we have kept our commitment to give a special focus to men’s health in the articles provided. In addition, the booklet will, as always, list the services available locally to assist cancer patients and their families. These listings are updated each year so that the information is as accurate as we can make it. Thanks are due to Southern Highland News and all the Directory’s sponsors who have made the publication possible.

Prostate Support Group – Official Launch
The formation of a Prostate Support Group for the Southern Highlands moves along at a great pace. The official launch has now been planned for Tuesday, February 5th with a meeting at 6pm in the Henrietta Rose Room near the Bowral Library. There will be two guest speakers for the evening : Dr. Nestor Lalak (Urologist) and Lucy Forbes (Physiotherapist). The invitation is open to all who are interested in seeing this group established in the district. For more information contact Tom Carroll on 0419482208 or email carroll.tom747@gmail.com

New laws restrict smoking in outdoor areas
From January 7 this year new laws have come into force in New South Wales declaring some outdoor areas to be smoke-free. Areas where smoking is now prohibited include public swimming pools, sports grounds, bus stops, taxi ranks, train station platforms, and within 10 metres of children's playgrounds.



The State Government should be applauded for its action on this policy which has allowed us to somewhat catch up. Comprehensive statewide smoking bans have been successfully implemented in Western Australia, Queensland, the ACT and Northern Territory. Tasmania and South Australia are legislating with the same purpose. Unfortunately, outdoor dining areas in NSW will not be included until July 2015 because of the Government’s pre-election deal with Clubs NSW. 

It should be noted that these measures will have the positive effect of reducing the amount of secondhand smoke inhaled by non-smokers. While no-one will be prevented from smoking tobacco, it will mean that they cannot do so in outdoor situations where they could adversely affect the health of others. NSW Health reports that smoking causes around 5,200 deaths and 44,000 hospitalisations in this State per year.

Coming Events
• February is Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month
• World Cancer Day supporting treatment and prevention of cancer :
“Together it is possible” - February 4th
• Prostate Support Group official launch, Henrietta Rose Room, 6pm, Feb. 5th
• Can Assist meeting, 10am Thursday, Feb. 14th at the old Bowral Hospital
• Hospice Week is February 25th to March 4th - Event schedule is now available :
   Please see our News and Events section.
• Cancer Services Directory 2013 to be published in SH News, Feb. 27th

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



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Cancer Connections - February 2012

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Cancer Services Directory 2012
Your copy of the Southern Highlands Cancer Services Directory for 2012 will be in the Southern Highland News, Wednesday, February 22nd. It is the 4th edition of this useful publication which lists the services available locally to assist cancer patients and their families. The Directory is updated each year by the Southern Highlands Cancer Leadership Committee so that the information is as accurate as we can make it. Thanks are due to Southern Highland News and all the Directory’s sponsors who make the publication possible.

Relay For Life event

The launch of Relay For Life 2012 took place on February 16th at a function at Harvey’s Bar, Gibraltar Hotel, Centennial Road, Bowral. The launch was a great success with everyone agreeing that it gives promise of an entertaining day & evening of fun activities for a worthwhile cause. For more details, see our additional item under the “News and Events” tab. 

Every two years a Relay for Life event is held in our district and the next one is coming up on April 28th-29th. This major fund-raiser for Cancer Council NSW will again be held at Eridge Park Oval from 9.30am on the Saturday to 10am on Sunday. You can register online by clicking here Relay for Life  to join a team or, better still, form your own team and make an entry. Early bird registration (before April 14) is $15 per person. 


New Oncology Unit
The Southern Highlands Cancer Centre will be moving from their current premises in Holmhale Street in March when the new oncology unit opens at Southern Highlands Private Hospital. The Cancer Centre provides cancer services to everyone in the Southern Highlands community either as privately insured patients, or uninsured (public) patients, through an agreement with the Sydney South West Area Health Service. The new unit will provide improved and expanded facilities for treating cancer patients. The exact date for the move will be made available on this website as soon as it comes to hand.

Cancer-related News
The media have reported that Cricket Australia will surrender hundreds of thousands of dollars in boundary-line advertising after it emerged it may have been illegally promoting tobacco. Concerns were first raised during the Boxing Day Test and the ads were briefly withdrawn. They were put back after Cricket Australia was given an assurance by the Indian High Commission that the product was mouthwash and did not contain any tobacco. The recent backdown came after the Federal Health Department launched an investigation into advertisements in Hindi on the boundary rope for Australia-India Test matches. The ads for a company that makes chewing tobacco and mouthwash were aimed at the massive TV audience in India. They also featured at the Twenty20 games in Sydney and Melbourne and were due to be shown during a series of one-day internationals.

Events for the Southern Highlands Community Hospice
* Screening of “Gone With The Wind”, February 24th, 6pm for 6.30pm
* Twilight Walk/Run, February 24th
* Jazz at Montrose berry farm, February 26th, 12.00 – 3.00
* Inaugural Gala Dinner, Gibraltar Hotel, March 2nd, 7pm for 7.30pm
For full details of these events, see the website www.shcommunityhospice.org/ or call at their office in Suite D, Springetts Arcade, Bowral.

Coming Events
• February is Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month.
• Hospice Week, February 24th to March 2nd. See item above for four events.
• Can Assist meeting, 10am Thursday, March 8th at the old Bowral Hospital.
• LG…FB workshop at the Cancer Centre in Bowral, March 20th. Need to register.
• Southern Highlands Relay for Life, April 28th -29th at Eridge Park Oval

Grahame Hackett (Chair, SHCLC)
info@sh-cancerconnect.com.au
















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