Mater Cancer Care Centre, Brisbane

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It’s a heartbreaking reality that one in two Queenslanders will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime—meaning each day around 70 Queensland families are blindsided by an unimaginable cancer diagnosis.*

Cancer has a significant impact on our loved ones which is why Mater has been providing the community with leading cancer care services for more than 100 years.

By going Dry this July you will be supporting people living well, beyond cancer.

Approximately 4,000 women are diagnosed with female-specific cancers in Queensland annually. Treatment is so successful that 80% of breast cancer and ~70% of gynaecological cancer patients are alive ten years later—but survival also entails living with the detrimental side effects of treatment. These effects can impair physical and psychosocial wellbeing, and they confer a significant risk of developing other chronic conditions.

However, through exercise, good nutrition, sleep hygiene, stress management and psychosocial support, these women can achieve good quality of life, reduce risk and flourish in their usual social and work roles. These studies demonstrate that the Women’s Wellness after Cancer Program (WWACP) improves quality of life and reduces treatment-related chronic disease risks in these women through targeted lifestyle management.

Your support through Dry July will allow us to implement and evaluate the WWACP as standard practice after treatment, Queensland-wide, across Mater. The e-enabled program can be delivered irrespective of the woman’s geographic location; therefore, these benefits will apply equally to rural, regional and metropolitan patients of Mater.
The WWACP should mitigate the considerable personal and social costs of treatment experienced by women with early stage female-specific cancers at all Mater facilities. The program should enhance participants’ quality of life, reduce their risk of preventable treatment-related chronic conditions, and enable women to self-manage their risk effectively.

Together we can make a difference for these women and support them living well, beyond cancer.

Source: *

Latest Updates

"Return to Wellness Program" at Mater Cancer Care Centre receives funding

Funds raised through Dry July 2019 will enable Dry July Foundation to fund the "Return to Wellness Program" at Mater Cancer Care Centre.

The Return to Wellness Program will give high-risk breast cancer patients access to a guided exercise program with a Physiotherapist and Breast Care Nurse, each providing guidance and support.

Patients having treatment for breast cancer can feel isolated from their family and community due to treatment effects. Physical activity in patients requires motivation and support, and instruction in a supported evidence based setting. The Wellness Program's aim is to improve the overall wellness in the body. 

Exercise during treatment has shown to reduce side effects of treatment (related to chemotherapy) and improve outcomes for cancer recurrence risk. Exercise and wellness after breast cancer treatment is an area highlighted by Cancer Australia as a focus area. Patients completing treatment benefit from exercise and support as they return to normal life after a serious diagnosis and treatments.  

There are many misconceptions in our community about diet & exercise and weight loss generally - treatment for breast cancer can add a layer of complexity and leave patients unsure what they can do.  

The Wellness Program will provide the forum to walk patients through an evidence based exercise program, healthy eating during and after treatment and opportunities to interact with the group to highlight key topics of interest and support for this patient group. 

Oncology Patient Lounge refurbishment

Thanks to the extraordinary efforts and generosity of Dry July participants like you in 2018, Mater in Brisbane has been able to refurbish the oncology patient lounge on one of their wards.

Mater’s clinicians and nurses identified that patients and their families needed a quiet, private area, to spend time with their family and friends, while also being able to have difficult discussions regarding their cancer treatment and disease progression. With your generous help, the patient lounge has now been beautifully refurbished and is available for patients and their families to use. 

Natalie Lanyon, a Social Work Team Leader at Mater says “the refurbishment of the lounge has given our patients and their family and friends a comfortable space, offering some privacy and an area for them to be together in a non-medical space, during what is often a very difficult time in their lives. As a Dry July participant you have made this happen. Thank you so much.” 

For patients in the end stages of life, the oncology lounge is able to offer so much more than just a comfortable space; it’s a space where they can connect, laugh and reminisce with family and friends. Often patients have compromised immune systems and are unable to leave the ward areas in hospital. But thanks to people like you, they now have a space away from the clinical area to be with their loved ones. 

The lounge also provides an area for important discussions and supportive conversations with family members, who may be grieving the imminent loss of their loved one.  

Mater’s oncology ward is 28 bed ward, which cares for cancer patients year round; from symptom management to investigations into the progress of their disease and, sometimes, end of life care.  

Thanks to your enthusiasm, commitment and support of Dry July you have made such a lasting impact on cancer patients and their families. Thank you for making a real difference to their lives. 

Mater Cancer Care Centre receives a grant from the Dry July Foundation

We're proud to announce that Mater Cancer Care Centre has received a grant from the Dry July Foundation 2018 Grant Program.

The grant will go towards the following: 

• Nature scene wall wraps to enhance the surroundings of the cancer centre and help to lift the spirits of the patients

• Ward 10B Patient Lounge upgrades to give patients and their family members a private, non-clinical space

How you can help Mater patients - Sign up for Dry July

It is important that patients within a hospital environment have access to a space that is an escape, especially during the tough times of a cancer diagnoses and treatment. This year, funds from Dry July aim to help support the refurbishment of Mater Hospital Brisbane’s 10B lounge for those being treated for cancer.

The intention is to transform this space from a clinical area to a warm, inviting and tranquil space for patients during their treatment. These improvements will greatly benefit patients’ mental and emotional wellbeing during their long periods of stay in hospital. Not only is this space designed to benefit patients, it is also particularly important for their families, providing them a personal area to reflect and grieve during the difficult days. This area will be updatedto include plants—bringing the outdoors in—as well as equipped with artwork, a DVD player and PlayStation.

The overall aim of the project is to help reduce stress and anxiety for patients during one of the hardest times in their lives. Having a calm and tranquil environment during such a stressful period would be greatly appreciated by Mater patients. Help them by signing up today.

Scalp coolers purchased through Dry July

Mater Foundation has used Dry July funds to purchase 2 scalp cooling cap systems for Mater Cancer Care Centre Springfield.

Chemotherapy works by targeting all rapidly dividing cells in the body. Hair is the second fastest dividing cell in the body and this is the reason why many chemotherapy drugs cause hair loss. The hair follicles in the growth phase are attached resulting in hair loss approximately 2 weeks after commencement of chemotherapy treatment.

The damage that chemotherapy causes to the hair follicle can be alleviated by using scalp cooling. Scalp cooling works by reducing the temperature of the scalp by a few degrees immediately before, during and after the administration of chemotherapy. This in turn reduces the blood flow to the hair follicles thus preventing or minimizing the damage, meaning that hair loss is not inevitable.

Purchasing two of the scalp cooling cap systems will mean that Mater Cancer Care Centre Springfield can provide this exceptional service for new patients diagnosed with cancer and starting their chemotherapy treatment.

Donate to Mater Cancer Care Centre, Brisbane