Last week we officially opened the Patient and Carer Cancer Information Room at the Monash Cancer Centre at Moorabbin Hospital.
The Southern Melbourne Integrated Cancer Service (SMICS) sponsored the room to provide employees, patients, families and carers with access to a wide range of cancer related resources, information and support.
Access to this information can help those affected by cancer to understand what to expect, what questions to ask their treating team and how to navigate what can be a challenging and emotional journey.
The room is staffed Monday to Thursday from 8am-5pm by our wonderful volunteers Peter Hughes and Sandy Cowling, who are available to direct and assist visitors.
Director of Oncology Eva Segelov explains, “Having a cancer diagnosis is overwhelming, and there’s an incredible amount of information and options available, so having a quiet and private space to access information is vital. It’s a great addition, and will be widely used.”
Shusannah Morris, CEO and co-founder of Life’s Little Treasures Foundation, which supports families in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and Special Care Nursery at Monash Children’s Hospital, was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer ten years ago.
This year Shusannah’s breast cancer returned, and she has been undergoing chemotherapy at Moorabbin Hospital since April.
Shusannah has been a regular visitor at the room since it first opened a month ago. “I chatted to the volunteers about CanTeen. I thought it was only for sick children, not for children who had sick parents, so I got in touch with CanTeen as a result of the information I received here, and they’ve been looking after my daughter and helping her which is amazing,” she explains.
“You’re not always ready to have information given to you, and you’ve got to find it in your own time, so having it available for the moment when you feel like you’re brave enough to walk through the door and come in is a huge thing,” said Shusannah.
The success of the room is a testament to the hard work and dedication of volunteers Peter and Sandy, and Chemotherapy Day Unit Nurse Manager Linda Marshall, Associate Nurse Unit Manager Jeremy Rodrigues, and Cancer Services Director of Clinical Operations Ellen Heywood.
We encourage all employees, patients, families and carers to visit the Patient and Carer Cancer Information Room and access the wide range of resources available to support them through their cancer journey.