Supporting breast cancer clinical trials

Learn why our research leader for NSW supports breast cancer clinical trials.  If you would like to know more about clinical trials, speak to your doctor or ask to speak to one of our research nurses.

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Meet our new specialists

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Left to right - Dr Susan Mincham, Dr Mihitha (Ari) Ariyapperuma, Dr Rohen White and Dr Jeremy Croker

Four new specialists have joined our team of cancer experts in Western Australia.

Radiation oncologists:

Dr Susan Mincham and Dr Jeremy Croker officially join our team as consultant radiation oncologists. Having both completed fellowship programs with GenesisCare at Fiona Stanley Hospital, they have been familiar faces within our department for some time now.

Both Susan and Jeremy will continue to consult at Fiona Stanley Hospital. Susan will also provide cover for Dr Melanie Jackson who will soon be on maternity leave.

Dr Rohen White joins Assistant Professor Raphael Chee and Dr Evan Ng as part of the radiation oncology team at Shenton House in Joondalup. Professor Nigel Spry will be taking extended leave from October 2017 – October 2018 and Rohen will provide cover during this time for Professor Spry as well as being open to new patients.

Medical oncologist:

Dr Mihitha Ariyapperuma, better known as Dr Ari, joins medical oncologists Dr Andrew Dean and Dr Tim Clay at Shenton House in Joondalup. Dr Ari treats all solid tumours and has a considerable interest in research.

The Exercise Clinic At Wembley Is Open

Cancer patients undergoing radiation therapy in Wembley can now incorporate the scientifically proven benefits of exercise into their overall treatment plan with the convenience of an onsite exercise clinic. 

As part of a recent total building refurbishment, GenesisCare’s treatment facility in Wembley has integrated an in-house exercise clinic into patient care. Staffed by exercise physiologists from Edith Cowan University’s Exercise Medicine Research Institute, the exercise clinic is available to all GenesisCare patients free of charge.

According to Professor Rob Newton, Associate Dean of Medical and Exercise Sciences and Co-Director of the Exercise Medicine Research Institute at ECU, when it comes to cancer and exercise, the old idea of encouraging patients to significantly rest and do very little activity has been totally rejected by recent research.

‘Exercise during and following cancer treatment provides many benefits to cancer survivors. Our research has demonstrated that exercise reduces the impact of cancer symptoms and treatment-related side-effects, including fatigue and nausea. We are also able to maintain or increase muscle mass and bone mineral density, which can be greatly affected by certain treatments, improve immune function, cardiovascular fitness, strength, flexibility and mood. Ongoing research is also showing that exercise may have an impact on survival and disease recurrence, and we are currently investigating this further. 

However, it’s not about just putting someone on a bike or a treadmill.

‘All patients are assessed in conjunction with their treating cancer specialist. Based on the cancer treatments they have received or are receiving, we devise what is essentially a tailored exercise prescription. This prescription is then carried out under the supervision of our exercise physiologists who are highly experienced in working with cancer patients,’ added Professor Newton 

Clinical exercise physiologist, Marianne Garvey, has been working with cancer patients at GenesisCare’s treatment centre in Joondalup for the last two and a half years. She welcomes the expansion of the exercise clinic into the Wembley centre where she has also begun conducting personalised sessions.

‘The most common comment from participants is that they feel better after an exercise session and that it’s great for morale. It doesn’t matter if a patient has never exercised before as our specialised program encourages people to progress at an individual pace, recognising that some days may be better than others.’

Dr Chris Harper, Medical Director at GenesisCare Wembley, sees major advantages for patients in having the exercise clinic on-site.

‘Exercise for many people doesn’t come easy. Imagine battling cancer, coming in for daily treatment sessions, and then being asked to go and exercise elsewhere. It means an extra trip, which isn’t easy for many people, and is far less motivating. With our new in-house exercise clinic, patients can come in for radiation therapy in their exercise gear and then walk just a few metres into the exercise clinic.’

The exercise clinic at GenesisCare Wembley will initially operate on Mondays from 2 - 4pm, Wednesdays from 9 - 11am and Thursdays from 2 - 4pm.

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Clinical Exercise Physiologist Marianne Garvey with David, the first patient to exercise in the new cancer patient exercise clinic at GenesisCare in Wembley.

Ask the Experts Webcast - Wednesday September 20 at 5pm (WST)

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You are invited - Ask the Experts Webcast

Wednesday September 20 at 5pm (WST)
Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia (PCFA) presents our next Ask the Experts Webcast

Prostate Cancer: What You Need to Know

Join us during International Prostate Cancer Awareness Month for this free, online Q&A webcast as our panel of leading health experts answer your questions about prostate cancer - from risk factors and diagnosis through to treatment and management of side effects.

This webcast will also explore how to navigate the different options presented after a diagnosis and the services available to men and their families.

Registration is free, and all questions will be anonymous so if you have a tricky question about your situation that you have not been able to ask – here is your chance.

For further information and to register: www.pcfa.org.au/asktheexperts

Building our resilience to support patients

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A cancer diagnosis can take a psychological toll on the individual and their family, with a rollercoaster of emotions along the way. Our patients have told us that their daily interactions with our team – whether it’s a welcoming smile on arrival or a chat over a coffee – can have a positive impact on what can be a sometimes testing journey.

To better support our teams to better support our patients, GenesisCare has partnered with clinical psychologist Dr Cath Adams to run a series of workshops focused on building resilience, eliciting and responding to emotional cues, and managing challenging conversations.

Our CancerCare Patient Experience Lead, Ada Ryan, said: “We monitor patient sentiment every month, and I’m always blown away by how much positive feedback there is for our teams. They have the most profound impact on the patient experience, so we are focused on looking for ways to better support them.”

The workshops were trialled in New South Wales and have been deemed an overwhelmingly success by participants. They will now be rolled out nationally.

GenesisCare recognises that the more positive and engaged our team are, the better the patient experience is. These types of initiatives help us continuously empower our team to deliver high quality care to patients.

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Genesis Logo Small.pngGenesisCare is Australia’s leading provider of radiation oncology, cardiology and sleep treatments. We exist to fill the treatment gap for the biggest disease burdens in Australia - cancer and heart care - in an environment of substantial unmet demand from an ageing population. Click here to learn more