The highly anticipated Western Cancer Centre in Dubbo has opened to patients, bringing life-saving services much closer to home for people in regional and remote areas of Western NSW.
Construction of the $35 million project is now complete, and services have begun moving into the state-of-the-art facility at Dubbo Hospital in stages from Monday 20 September.
Federal Member for Parkes Mark Coulton said the completion of the Western Cancer Centre marks a historic milestone for the Dubbo community and the entire western region.
“This is one of my proudest days as the Member for Parkes,” Mr Coulton said.
“The Western Cancer Centre is something I’ve passionately fought for since 2016 and I’m thrilled to see this critical project become a reality.
“This facility will allow cancer patients to stay closer to their loved ones during treatment, providing the quality care and support that regional people need and deserve.
“It will not only benefit families throughout the western region but will be utilised by people right across my electorate and regional NSW who will no longer have to travel to the city to access life-saving cancer treatment.
“The support for this centre from right across Western NSW has been overwhelming – this is evident from the 45,961 signatures that I delivered to the Australian Parliament in November 2016, calling for this facility. I’m proud we’ve been able to deliver on this commitment.”
The clinic rooms and reception opened first and will be followed by new chemotherapy treatment spaces and wellness space next month. Radiation therapy and PET CT Scanner services will be available in the coming months.
Member for the Dubbo electorate Dugald Saunders said the community has been provided with its first look of the new facility, which is part of the $306.3 million Dubbo Health Service redevelopment.
“I’m really proud we’ve been able to deliver this once-in-a-generation health infrastructure project for Western NSW, which will provide the latest treatment and diagnostic services and new health services for the region,” Mr Saunders said.
“For the first time, Dubbo Hospital will have a PET CT Scanner for advanced diagnostic services and radiation therapy, which will significantly improve health outcomes in the region.
“It will significantly reduce the need for cancer patients to travel to Sydney or Newcastle for treatment – vastly improving their quality of life.”
The Australian Government provided $25 million for the state-of-the-art health service, with the NSW Government contributing the remaining $10 million.
The Western Cancer Centre Dubbo includes 16 chemotherapy spaces doubling capacity, as well as new consultation rooms and wellness space to provide support and well-being services to patients and their families.
Designed in close consultation with the community, the modern two-storey building includes uplifting artwork, including murals of local Aboriginal bush foods by renowned public artist Fintan Magee, designed to promote well-being for patients and families during their visit.
The Cancer Centre also features an internal suspended artwork from Jade Oakley in collaboration with Aunty Di McNaboe that depicts local Aboriginal bush foods. There are also framed photographic portraits of “friendly faces” from Dubbo and Western NSW communities by Asher Milgate, and interior wall paintings of the local waterways in Western NSW by artist Greg Carosi.
Works across the health campus were carefully staged to ensure all current patient services were maintained during what has been significant construction period.
Construction of the new three-storey Macquarie Building at Dubbo Hospital, as part of the $306.3 million Dubbo Health Service redevelopment, is complete and has been handed over to the Western NSW Local Health District. The new Intensive Care Unit on level 2 has opened ahead of schedule providing extra capacity for the hospital during the COVID-19 outbreak.