29.10.2020 09:11 Age: 121 days

Goldfields breast cancer support increased

Kalgoorlie nurses at TeleLymphoedema practical training day.

The collaborative WA Country Health Service (WACHS) and Fiona Stanley Hospital (FSH) TeleLymphoedema service has expanded to Kalgoorlie Health Campus to further support breast cancer related lymphoedema treatment locally via videoconferencing technology.

Lymphoedema is a common and lifelong side effect of cancer treatments causing swelling and pain in the limbs requiring ongoing management.

WACHS Acting Regional Director (Goldfields) Peter Tredinnick said expansion of the trial service to Kalgoorlie Health Campus will allow Goldfields residents to receive local lymphoedema support from a WACHS physiotherapist or occupational therapist with a FSH specialist providing supervision and education via telehealth.

“The TeleLymphoedema service launched as a pilot in 2019 at Katanning Health Campus and Esperance Health Campus and has been successful in reducing patients’ need to travel for essential care, with eight patients so far being able to receive care close to home,” Mr Tredinnick said.

“It is expected that more Goldfields locals experiencing breast cancer will benefit from increased availability of the TeleLymphoedema service at Kalgoorlie Health Campus.”

At present, the new service in Kalgoorlie already has four patients expected to receive care.

“Approximately 20 per cent of patients treated for common cancers, such as breast cancer, will be impacted for life by lymphoedema making expansion of the TeleLymphoedema service so beneficial for the Goldfields community.”

“Patients receiving lymphoedema care via telehealth at Katanning and Esperance Health Campus have had to travel less and have said they are very satisfied with the service and WACHS expects the same result will be achieved at Kalgoorlie Health Campus,” Mr Tridinnick added.

Results of the new Kalgoorlie Health Campus service will be used to inform the expansion to other WACHS hospitals.