Country Liberals Senator for the Northern Territory, Nigel Scullion, has welcomed a decision by the Coalition Government to fund three McGrath Breast Care Nurses in the Territory.
Senator Scullion said two of the nurses would be based in Darwin, with the third in Alice Springs.
“These nurses will provide vital physical, psychological and emotional support to people diagnosed with breast cancer,” Senator Scullion said.
“The support McGrath Breast Care Nurses provide isn’t just to the patients, but also to their families and carers – starting from diagnosis and continuing throughout their treatment.
“The role these nurses play in a patient’s treatment journey involves them acting as the main liaison between the patients and the specialists who coordinate their treatment, a role I can only imagine is invaluable during a very difficult time in a patient’s life.”
Senator Scullion said the Government had announced $20.5 million in new funding for McGrath Breast Care Nurses to ensure ongoing support for people being treated for breast cancer.
Breast cancer is estimated to be the third most commonly diagnosed cancer and the most common cancer for Australian women. It currently affects one in eight Australian women before the age of 85.
This year, it is estimated that more than 16,000 people will be diagnosed – over 15,900 women and 150 men.
The Government’s commitment of $20.5 million over four years from 2017-18 will fund up to 57 of the McGrath Foundation’s nurse positions in approximately 55 locations across the country, with most of these working in regional and rural communities.
Since 2013, Commonwealth-funded McGrath Breast Care Nurses have supported around 15,000 Australians and their families.
This new four-year extension to the Government’s previous funding agreement with the McGrath Foundation of $18.5 million will ensure this valuable support and coordination of care continues for patients with breast cancer.