State Member for Wallsend, Ms Sonia Hornery MP, has called on the Health Minister, the Hon Brad Hazzard MP, to urgently look into wait times for patients seeking chemotherapy treatment at the Mater Hospital, following reports of patients being forced to wait up to 6 weeks for treatment.
Ms Hornery’s office has spoken with a number of patients this week who have been advised by the Hospital that there are no spaces available for them for treatment at the moment and they would have to wait until mid-November before treatment could begin.
Ms Hornery has written to the Health Minister about the delays and will today move a Notice of Motion in the NSW Parliament calling for urgent action by the Health Minister.
Quotes attributable to Member for Wallsend, Sonia Hornery
“This situation is completely unacceptable. Cancer patients should not be forced to wait 6 weeks before treatment starts.”
“Being diagnosed and then advised that your treatment cannot start because of a lack of spaces is causing additional distress at what is a difficult time for patients.”
“Yesterday the Health Minister was crowing about the record investment by him in health, yet we see patients being forced to wait for treatment.”
“Patients are concerned about their health and while a week or two will not make a difference to the outcome for most patients, those who are very symptomatic may be affected.”
“A lot of cancers are high-grade malignancies and it is important that patients get treatment in a timely fashion. Failure to do so will have knock-on effects in terms of survival.”
“I will be calling on the Minister to review what is happening and ensure there are enough spaces for patients to receive the treatment that they desperately need.”