Being involved in such a program ensures that the experiences I endured during my own cancer battles, along with the processes I went through, can be put to good use in assisting present and future consumers.
- Ray Kelly
Accommodation & Transport Assistance
Cancer care may require travel and overnight stays in Regional centres or Melbourne.
If assistance is required, speak to:
the Social Worker at your treating hospital or GP or practice nurse at your doctor's clinic for more information
Cancer Council support services – please call 13 11 20 for additional accommodation and transport assistance advice
We have listed some regional services that GICS are aware of but this does not include every service available. If you know of a service that can be included on this page, please contact us.
Victorian Patient Transport and Assistance Scheme
Victorian Patient Transport and Assistance Scheme assists people in isolated communities to access specialist medical treatment that is not available where they live.
MediStays provides a range of accommodation options to suit each medical travellers' individual situations.
The MediStays website functions just like other travel websites but offers further discounted rates, travel tips, information on travel reimbursement and a phone concierge service.
Stawell and Northern Grampians
If your treatment is in Melbourne
Learn more here.
Becoming a Consumer Representative
If you have had an experience of cancer or supported someone through cancer, your experience and perspective can contribute to understanding the needs of people affected by cancer. By sharing your knowledge, you can contribute to improvements to cancer services in our region.
As a network agency we work in partnership with the regional health services who provide services for people with cancer across the Grampians region. We link directly with regional health services to recruit consumers to be involved in projects. A range of opportunities exist to help support the work undertaken by GICS, including:
GICS Governance Group member
Project committees and workshops
Review of information for patients
Attendance at meetings and events
Consumer roles are voluntary and participation in meetings and workshops can be face-to-face, or via telephone or videoconferencing.
To register your interest or for more information, please contact Glenn Reeves on (03) 5320 4041 or email mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org .
Framework for Consumer Involvement
To understand more about the role of consumers please refer to the National Framework for Consumer Involvement in Cancer Control (document attached)
GICS Community Ambassador Program
When a family member or friend is diagnosed with cancer we want to provide support, but often finding the right things to say and do can be difficult. A free 30 minute presentation (including question time) is available to all community groups in the Grampians Region.
The presentation will be delivered by a member of the Grampians Integrated Cancer Service (GICS) Consumer Advisory Group. All our members have had an experience of cancer and understand the impact a cancer diagnosis can have.
The presentation includes:
A personal story
Supporting a friend or family member with cancer
What to say / not to say
Cancer Statistics in the Grampians Region
Optimal Care Pathways
Additional supports including the Cancer Council Helpline
If you would like a GICS Community Ambassador to speak to your group, please contact Glenn Reeves – GICS Cancer Service Improvement Officer.
Phone: (03) 5320 4041
“Emotional and practical support is just as important as the medical treatment. You need support, and to get the support, you need to know what is out there and how to get it.”
“Being involved in such a program ensures that the experiences I endured during my own cancer battles, along with the processes I went through, can be put to good use in assisting present and future consumers”.
My Cancer Care Record
My Cancer Care Record (My CCR) is a hand-held folder, designed specifically for newly-diagnosed patients affected by cancer. It seeks to help patients store, record and organise their cancer and other related health information.
The folder has been designed by consumers for consumers, and was trialled and distributed within 13 service providers across the Grampians and North Eastern Melbourne regions - as part of a partnership between North Eastern Melbourne Integrated Cancer Service (NEMICS) and GICS. 400 folders were distributed to patients within the Grampians region.
Cancer carer Ian Kemp, is delighted, "My Cancer Care Record empowers patients and their carers to make informed decisions about their treatment options. It is something that allows clinicians and their care teams to develop information specifically for their patients. Patients can take copies of their test results, medications can be recorded, visits can be documented, questions for their next visit to an oncologist can be prepared in advance."
A consultant was engaged to provide an independent evaluation of the My CCR, and an interim report of the first 100 patient surveys was recently provided.
Early findings indicate:
A usage rate of 75% by those survey respondents who chose to take a My CCR
97% of survey respondents found My CCR useful
40% said they would use My CCR if it was available as an App to use on a smart phone or tablet
Patients use it for the following purposes:
to store medical and cancer related information (89%)
to record information about appointments, education or contacts (79%)
to remember important medical details and information (68%)
to share information with my family or friends (44%)
Numerous suggestions for improving the My CCR were also identified.
For further information contact:
Glenn Reeves - Cancer Service Improvement Officer
(03) 5320 4041
Head and Neck Cancer Education and Support Group
Our aim is to provide information and support for those affected by Head and Neck Cancer.
We will invite a guest speaker to discuss a relevant topic, and share stories & tips from other people going through similar experiences.
In July and October last year, we held two community events to connect with 136 patients, carers, family members and healthcare professionals.
We have partnered with Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre to help support the group going forward, and to provide a location to host the meetings in the Wellbeing Centre.
The formation of this group has been led by the Western Central Melbourne Integrated Cancer Service (WCMICS), following a gap identified in the support available to those affected by Head and Neck Cancer.
Remaining Meeting dates in 2020:
Thurs 8th October
Weds 9th December
Join us at the Wellbeing Centre on Level 1, at Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre from 12pm to 1:30pm. Register your attendance here.
Visit the Victorian Head & Neck Cancer Education and Support Group website.
Ovarian Cancer Awareness Ballarat
A Support and Friendship group for those who have been touched by an Ovarian Cancer diagnosis in the Ballarat region. We also work in local community to raise awareness of this disease.Meeting at least once per month, usually at restaurants or private residences.
For further information, please contact:
0491 163 543
Ararat Breast Cancer Support Group
The Ararat Breast Cancer Support Group meets on the first Thursday of the month at 10am, at the Ararat Alexandra Croquet Club.
Address - corner High and Vincent Streets, Ararat VIC 3377
For further information please contact Kaye Fox on 5352 1462.
Ballarat Lymphoedema Education Support Group
Learn how to take control and manage this condition. Meeting held on the first Tuesday of the month:
Eastwood Leisure Complex
20 Eastwood Street
Ballarat VIC 3350
For further information please contact Kay Timmins on 0417 155 511.
The Victorian Integrated Cancer Services are supported by the Victorian Government
BRICC Level 2,
Ballarat Health Services
1 Drummond Street VIC 3350
Phone: (03) 5320 4782
The Victorian Integrated Cancer Services acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as the Traditional Custodians of the land and acknowledges and pays respect to their Elders, past and present.
We are committed to safe and inclusive work places, policies and services for people of LGBTIQ communities and their families.