Wairarapa Hospital’s chemotherapy outreach service celebrated its first anniversary last week. In attendance were [from left to right] Julia Murphy, Wuss Harvie, Glenys Sandoval, Lorraine Ross, Kellie Warren-Pollard and Hayley Morum.
PHOTO/SUPPLIED

Wairarapa Hospital’s chemotherapy outreach service celebrated its first anniversary on Friday.

Since starting last February, chemotherapy has been offered in Wairarapa to save cancer patients the trauma of travel every time they receive treatment.

More than 300 chemotherapies have been administered during this time, saving many from having to travel to other clinics.

Wairarapa DHB Board member Fiona Samuel knows first-hand how beneficial the chemotherapy unit is for Wairarapa residents.

“It is exciting for this region that we are now celebrating [the service’s] first birthday. Sadly, I am now spending far more time there than I’d like to, as nice a place as the unit is.”

Samuel said her partner was a regular user of the service and they were both very grateful for the privilege.

“Being spared the drive over the hill is a wonderful gift,” she said. “It makes me proud that the DHB made this happen for this community.

“All we can say is thank you.”

On Thursday a commemorative morning tea was organised to mark the contribution of the Wellington Blood and Cancer Centre, the Mid Central District Health Board, Cancer Society and other hospital staff.

Charge nurse manager Julia Murphy said the year had gone fast.

Eight Wairarapa staff are now trained and certified to administer chemotherapy.

There are some treatments that are still required to be administered in the main centres for clinical reasons but there is hope more and more treatments will be able to be provided by staff in Masterton.