Western NSW men will be relieved of the stress and expense of having to travel to major cities for an advanced biopsy for prostate cancer because of a $60,000 grant allowing Dubbo Hospital to buy a machine.
Some of them are reluctant or unable to make the journey to the big smoke and choose to ignore the early signs of prostate cancer.
Not-for-profit charity, The Male Bag Foundation, raised money for a Transperineal Biopsy Machine (TBM) for Dubbo Hospital, knowing the incidence of prostate cancer in the Western NSW Local Health District was “unacceptably high”.
Dubbo is among five hospitals in Victoria and NSW to have received grants from the foundation which works “to reduce the impact of prostate cancer in regional communities”.
The foundation is adamant that lives are saved by “early biopsies in regional hospitals using the latest technology”.
Donations received by the foundation during its October 2018 Big Ride that took in Western NSW communities make up the $60,000 grant.
Foundation patron David Parkin OAM said it welcomed the opportunity to accelerate the delivery of world-class prostate cancer biopsy services to a large and diverse health district in NSW.
“The foundation’s riders and support team on our 2000-kilometre postie bike ride last October experienced the vastness of the western health care district first-hand, and our experience tells us that the convenience and improved health outcomes from TBM services will be a game-changer for men, their families and towns from Bourke to Canowindra,” he said.
The health district’s chief executive Scott McLachlan has thanked the foundation.
“They appeared from nowhere on their postie bikes raising funds to fight prostate cancer, and now their generosity will ensure that advanced biopsy services will be available in Dubbo in a just few months,” he said.
The foundation reports that the TBM procedure supersedes existing surgery, and lowers the risk of infection and recovery time for patients.
Its annual “postie rides” have raised more than $1.3 million. Riders cover the costs of each event so all money raised goes directly to grants.
The Foundation’s day-to-day operations are managed by volunteers and professional advice is provided pro-bono.
To learn more visit www.themalebagfoundation.org.au.