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Cancer group 'confident' on Derry unit 13.10.10

CANCER group Co-operating for Cancer Care NorthWest (CCC(NW) said it is confident that both Ministers for Health, North and South support the proposed cross border radiation unit for the North West
“Members of CCC(NW) have been lobbying for radiation services to be sited in the North West Region for over five years. As a region, the North West is co-dependent on populations on either side of the border to provide the ‘critical mass’ to safely provide a radiation service,” said group spokesperson, Noelle Duddy.
“CCC(NW) remains in regular contact with both Departments of Health regarding progress to finalise the business case for the radiation unit to be built at Altnagelvin Hospital. We remain confident that both Ministers support this project.”
In his recent correspondence with CCCNW on October 5, Minister McGimpsey writes: “I can assure you my Department is working hard against a tight timescale to ensure that the proposed satellite radiotherapy centre is appropriate in terms of capacity, high quality and value for money for the taxpayer. It is important when planning a public investment of this scale that we get it right ... I would like to reassure you, of my ongoing commitment to improving the experience of all patients, including those suffering from cancer.”
Ms Duddy added: “Concerns have been raised in some quarters in Donegal that Donegal patients may be treated as “spare capacity” in the proposed radiation unit. CCC(NW) is absolutely confident that all cancer patients requiring radiotherapy in the proposed unit will receive their treatment as they require it.
"Indeed, one of the first things Minister McGimpsey reassured us of when we first met him in January 2008 was that all cancer patients, regardless of which side of the border they lived on would receive the same high quality and standard of treatment - all patients would have equal access to treatment according to their need.
“CCC(NW) remains optimistic that the proposed cross border radiation unit for the North West will be built. North-South cooperation for this radiation unit is a win-win situation for everyone: for cancer patients; for healthcare professionals; for research and development: for politicians and for the taxpayer on both sides of the border."
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