Posts tagged with "Cancer Care"

Funding a Vital Chemotherapy Tool

The New Biological Safety Cabinet

When facing a cancer diagnosis, we can expect thorough treatment that mitigates as many risks as possible. But there’s often more that goes into our treatment than we realize!

For instance, patients receiving chemotherapy at the Yarmouth Regional Hospital have their chemotherapy drugs mixed onsite in the Pharmacy Department. To make sure that each dose is safe and sterile, they all need to be mixed in a biological safety cabinet. Not only does this keep the doses safe, it keeps the pharmacy staff safe as well as they mix these cytotoxic drugs. It’s just one example of the behind-the-scenes work that must take place for our healthcare system to run efficiently, smoothly, and safely.

When we were approached by Maggie Arenburg (Manager, Pharmacy South West Nova Scotia) and Pam Robichaud (Manager, WZ Cancer Care Program) and told of their need for a new biological safety cabinet (at a cost of $25,318), we knew we had to step in to help. According to Pam and Maggie, “Given the rising number of cancer diagnoses in recent years, the replacement of our old, antiquated equipment was essential and timely.”

Karen Gorst and Kristen Pulsifer at Work (L-R)

Put simply, the hospital’s patients and staff both deserve to be as safe as possible – and we were proud to do our part. In spring of 2024, the new cabinet (sometimes colloquially referred to as a “chemo hood”) were installed in the Yarmouth Pharmacy Department. Without this, provision of lifesaving chemotherapy in Yarmouth would be either impossible or significantly delayed. And it’s all made possible because of our inspiring donors who understand the need for supporting and enhancing healthcare in our regional hospital!

Taking a closer look at cancer services in Yarmouth, Digby and Shelburne counties

Nova Scotia Health Authority’s (NSHA) Nova Scotia Cancer Care Program is conducting a review of cancer services in Yarmouth, Digby and Shelburne counties, to determine the feasibility and sustainability of adding radiation therapy services at Yarmouth Regional Hospital.

“Being diagnosed with cancer is stressful and patients and families in southwestern Nova Scotia have told us that traveling to Halifax for radiation therapy is an added strain,” said Dr. Drew Bethune, Medical Director, Nova Scotia Cancer Care Program. “They have asked us to take another look at the possibility of having these services at the Yarmouth Regional Hospital and that’s what we are doing. We are also considering other supports to help improve access to care for patients when they need to travel for specialty cancer services.”

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The ball is rolling to support regional radiation therapy at Yarmouth hospital, Foundation chair says

The recent grassroots movement demanding a radiation therapy centre for the Yarmouth area is a welcome development for the Yarmouth Hospital Foundation, says its chair, Don Cook.

The Foundation Board has been working quietly behind the scenes for some time to explore the need for a cancer radiation treatment centre for western Nova Scotia to be based at Yarmouth Regional Hospital.

The possibility has been on the radar ever since the Dr. Edwin Janke Cancer Centre opened in 2009 to serve Yarmouth, Digby and Shelburne Counties. It offers chemotherapy and a variety of other cancer services and support.

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