$63 million boost for radiation therapy services in regional Australia

In addition to the $6 billion a year the Liberal National Government provides for cancer treatments and services, we are investing $63.4 million to expand cancer treatment capacity through new radiation therapy services in 13 regional locations.

The federally funded initiative will provide greater access, help and support for people fighting cancer.

The new centres will deliver high quality, comprehensive radiation oncology services in the following areas;

  • NSW – South Coast (Eurobodalla), Grafton/Clarence Valley, Tweed region
  • Mid North Coast (Nambucca/Kempsey), Taree Region, Armidale, and Western NSW/Griffith
  • QLD – Gladstone
  • VIC – East Gippsland and Warragul/South Gippsland Regions
  • SA – Mr Gambier/Limestone Coast
  • TAS – Burnie
  • WA – Geraldton

The Government is addressing the very real difficulty patients in regional and rural communities face in accessing radiation therapy – therapy that could change their lives.

It is vital that we do all we can to provide cancer care for patients living in Australia.

We know that radiation therapy can open up options for people’s cancer treatment mix. It is a proven, life-saving used in 48 per cent of successful cancer treatments.

It helps patients with certain types of cancer avoid expensive and intrusive surgery, saving them thousands of dollars and avoiding long recoveries.

Yet we also know that a key barrier to radiation therapy in Australia is not cost, nor its effectiveness. It’s lack of access.

Too many Australians – especially people in regional and rural communities – cannot access radiation therapy because they live too far from their nearest radiation therapy centre.

A long drive or bus trip for therapy means time, money and inconvenience for patients at this stressful time in their lives.

Through this funding, we can help patients to overcome these issues, so they and their families can focus on what matters – fighting and beating cancer.

The Liberal National Government is committed to supporting regional Australia, and is working with key stakeholders to ensure that the investment is well targeted to support regional population centres that can service their surrounding areas.

This investment builds on our $606 million investment for diagnostic imaging benefiting cancer and other patients in the budget.

We continue to invest in cancer medicines, with $1.4 billion listed on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme in the past year such as for lung, skin, and breast cancers.

Unlike Labor, we are listing all drugs recommended by the independent medical experts.

The Liberal National Government’s strong economic management ensures the continued investment of record funding into vital health initiatives including drug and alcohol treatment, mental health, life-saving medicines, Medicare and hospitals.

/National Party's Public Release. View in full here.