Dubbo Hospital’s MRI machine to benefit Cobar patients

Federal Member for Parkes, Mark Coulton and State Member for Dubbo Dugald
Saunders checked out the new MRI machine at Dubbo Base Hospital last week.

Cobar residents will soon have access to better medical services with a new MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) machine at Dubbo Base Hospital and work has commenced on the $35million Western Cancer Centre.

Minister for Regional Health and Federal Member for Parkes Mark Coulton said he is thrilled that patients across the NSW western region will benefit from the Federal Government’s decision to provide fully-subsidised Medicare-eligible (MRI) scans at Dubbo Base Hospital and, in due time, a specialised cancer centre to service Western area patients.

“Patients will now be able to access lifesaving scans at their fingertips for cancer, stroke, heart and other medical conditions,” Mr Coulton said of the new MRI machine.

Mr Coulton said the MRI announcement  added another exciting dimension to Dubbo’s healthcare offering, after demolition work also started last week to make way for the Western Cancer Centre.

State Member for Dubbo Dugald Saunders said the Western Cancer Centre project would reduce costs for patients who currently
access radiotherapy services in Orange or Sydney.

“The new centre will have one medical oncology unit with at least 16 treatment bays, one radiation therapy unit, one PET/CT diagnostic unit and support spaces including up to 14 consulting rooms,” Mr Saunders said.

“It will mean that people can stay closer to family and friends while undergoing treatment that in the past they would have had to travel much longer distances to receive.”

Works on the Western Cancer Centre will include demolition of the old Dialysis Unit and operating theatre building on the western side of the Dubbo Hospital site.

The new building will link with the Dubbo Base Hospital Redevelopment Stage 4 Clinical Services Building.

Mr Coulton said he had been working hard to ensure people in the bush were able to access the very best of healthcare.

“We also expect this will significantly reduce waiting times for Medicare-subsided scans.”

Cobar Health Council chairman Gordon Hill also welcomed news of a new MRI machine and the commencement of work on the Western Cancer Centre saying both would be of huge benefit to Cobar residents.

“It will certainly bring major medical services closer to the people of Cobar and greatly reduce travel times for people needing access to these services and their families.

“These state of the art services, along with the well established Macquarie Home Stay facility, will be an ongoing boon for people in western NSW,” Mr Hill said.