A Snapshot of Cancer In the Southern Highlands


Cancer facts in the Southern Highlands 2011

  •  Prostate cancer is the most common form of cancer in men in NSW and is also the most common cancer for men in the Southern Highlands with approximately 59 new cases each year. This is significantly above the state average. Most prostate cancers occur in men over 65 – and most are not life threatening.

  •  Breast cancer is the most common form of cancer in Australian women. It is the most common cancer for women in the Southern Highlands, with an incidence of approximately 70 new cases per year. Protect yourself – all women should be breast aware and if you are over 50 you should have a mammogram every two years.

  •  Bowel/Colorectal cancer is one of the most curable cancers, if it’s detected early. In the Southern Highlands there are approximately 25 new cases per year, making bowel cancer one of the most common cancers in the Southern Highlands. You can reduce your risk of bowel cancer by eating a balanced diet high in fruits and vegetables and exercising regularly. Men and women over fifty should be screened each year – you can buy a kit at your local chemist, or ask your GP for more details.

  •  Australia has the highest rates of Melanoma in the world. Melanoma is another common cancer in the Southern Highlands with approximately 35 new cases per year. Protection for you and your family is easy – stay in the shade, slip on a shirt, slop on sunscreen, slap on a hat, wear sunglasses and avoid the sun during the high UV times of 10am to 3pm.

  •  Lung cancer is another common cancer in the Southern Highlands with approximately 23 new cases each year. To reduce your risk, give up smoking.


Cancer services available in the Southern Highlands 2011

  • The Southern Highlands Cancer Centre provides a multidisciplinary cancer service with specialists in medical oncology and radiation oncology attending regularly. Chemotherapy is available irrespective of insurance status due to an agreement with the South West Sydney Local Health District. Close co-operation with GP’s and the Palliative Care Service exists, so patients’ conditions are communicated with all carers.  Read more >>

  • Haematology services are to start at the Macarthur Cancer Centre in late 2011, an improvement where patients have recently had to travel to Liverpool, Wollongong or Sydney to access haematology services. 

  • Clinical Trials are available through a grant from the NSW Cancer Institute. Current areas of interest are breast cancer prevention and advanced lung cancer with planned trials for pain control and bowel cancer.

  • The McGrath Foundation have funded a breast care nurse for patients with breast cancer in the Southern Highlands to provide support, advice and co-ordination of care.  Read more >>