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Guides to Best Cancer Care
OPTIMAL CARE PATHWAYS – Guides to best cancer care
These short guides help patients understand the optimal cancer care that should be provided when diagnosed with cancer, and what questions to ask your health professionals to make sure you receive the best care at every step. Carers, family and friends may also find them helpful.
To view the ‘Guides to best cancer care’ click on the button below.
Supportive care refers to services required by those affected or impacted by cancer. It includes information provision, symptom control, self-help and social support, psychological and spiritual support, rehabilitation, palliative care and bereavement care, amongst other things. Supportive care activities in cancer can be broadly defined by the following five categories:
Information needs; and
Supportive care can be optimised through routine screening and follow-on referrals to appropriate treatment and care services. During your cancer treatment you may have a supportive care screening conducted by your healthcare professional. Members of the multidisciplinary team as well as family members, friends, support groups, volunteers and other community-based organisations can all play an important role in a cancer patients’ supportive care.
Benefits provided by Supportive Care for those affected by cancer include:
A positive impact on experiences of patients by reducing levels of anxiety and depression, better managing physical symptoms and increasing patient knowledge of the disease and treatment;
Improved medical outcomes through better adherence to treatment including faster recovery, fewer post-hospital complications, enhanced self-care and greater ability to cope with difficult treatments; and
Enhanced decision-making, active participation in care and improved patient satisfaction with care.
There are many support services available to access. Please click on the below links for more information.
Cancer Supportive Care:
Cancer supportive care for older people:
Source: Department of Health, Victoria (2009): Providing optimal cancer care. Supportive care policy for Victoria.
Consumers can provide unique and valuable insights into healthcare due to their experiences of using the health system as a patient, client, carer or simply as a community member who understands what other community members may need or value.
GRICS values consumer input to enhance our service improvement projects and to positively impact cancer outcomes for Gippsland. At GRICS ‘consumer engagement’ refers to being actively involved in our work and contributing to the conversation on what we do.
There are two levels consumers can engage with GRICS:
Level 1: GRICS Consumer Network
A distribution list of consumers to receive consumer-related information and project collaboration opportunities via email or post.
To be a member of the GRICS Consumer Network, please contact GRICS on 03 5173 8351 or send an email using the button below.
Level 2: GRICS Consumer Reference Group (CRG)
Members provide support and advice to assist cancer service improvement across Gippsland. This is achieved through members attending three Consumer Reference Group meetings per year (either face to-face or online) and actively contributing to the operation of GRICS outside of CRG meetings.
To be a member of the GRICS CRG, please contact GRICS on 03 5173 8351 or send an email using the button below.
Multidisciplinary Team Meetings
A cancer multidisciplinary meeting (MDM) is where a team of health professionals meet to:
Review tests and scans
Consider all the treatment options and best practice guidelines
Make an individualised recommended treatment plan for each patient
For more information about MDMs in Gippsland please see: Multidisciplinary meetings: Understanding how your care is planned
For more information on multidisciplinary care in Victoria please see: DHHS Website
Clinical trials are an important way of testing the efficacy of new treatment options for cancer patients. Participation in a clinical trial is voluntary and open to anyone who meets the specified criteria outlined in the research protocol. Please note, some clinical trials can use exclusionary criteria such as age, gender, stage of disease or medical history when determining an applicants’ eligibility to participate in a clinical trial.
All clinical trials must be approved by a Victorian Human Research Ethics Committee before recruitment of volunteers can take place. The approvals process provides participants with assurances that:
Rights of cancer patients have been carefully considered in the research proposal; and
Benefits and risks have been rigorously tested against best-practice standards.
For more information on available clinical trial activity within Victoria please click on the following links:
The Victorian Clinical Trials Link
The Victorian Clinical Trials Link (VCTL) is a searchable portal of all cancer clinical trials in Victoria. It provides quick and easy access to cancer clinical trials for both clinicians and consumers. New and existing clinical trials are updated on the VCTL regularly by Cancer Council Victoria staff. The VCTL houses information about specific treatment intervention clinical trials that are being conducted in Victoria and available to patients, as well as general information and resources about clinical trials.
The VCTL comes in two forms; an app which is available to download for your Apple or Android phone and a website which can be accessed by visiting www.cancervic.org.au/trials
For general information on clinical trials operating in Australia please click on the following link:
The Victorian Integrated Cancer Services are supported by the Victorian Government
Level 1, Cancer Care Centre
Latrobe Regional Hospital
PO Box 424
Traralgon VIC 3844
Phone: (03) 5173 8351
Fax: (03) 5173 8198
© 2021 Gippsland Regional Integrated Cancer Service
The Victorian Integrated Cancer Services acknowledge 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 celebrate, value and include people of all backgrounds, genders, sexualities, cultures, bodies and abilities.