Bankstown to benefit from Labor Government cancer package

Women in Bankstown and surrounding suburbs will benefit from additional breast screening services thanks to the Gillard Government’s $226 million package to fight cancer, Federal Minister for Health, Tanya Plibersek, and Federal Member for Blaxland, Jason Clare, said today.

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Ms Plibersek visited the Bankstown Breastscreen Clinic, and said the 2013-14 Budget provided a significant boost to services for a range of the most common and most deadly cancers affecting Australians.

“The extra detection, prevention care and support services provided in our $226 million package will benefit patients living with breast, cervical, prostate, lung and bowel cancer,” Ms Plibersek said.

“This new funding is on top of the Government’s unprecedented investment of around $3.5 billion to combat cancer since 2007.

“This funding demonstrates the Government’s unwavering commitment to building a world-class cancer care system for all Australians.

“We are continuing the vital work we began more than five years ago to ensure people can access early detection, treatment and quality care, where and when they need it.”

Mr Clare said the cancer package meant that more women in Bankstown would be able to participate in free breast screening to detect cancer.

“An additional 374 local women in Bankstown aged 70 to 74 will be able to get their mammograms here for free. This means abnormalities can be detected and treated earlier.

“Bankstown Breastscreen uses new digital mammography technology which was installed last year. This was funded by the Labor Government, and allows for quicker transfer of images and means women get their results quicker.”

The cancer package provides:

  • $55.7 million to expand BreastScreen Australia’s target age range by five years, from women aged 50 to 69 to women aged 50 to 74 years
  • $19.5 million to continue and expand the breast care nurses program, administered through the McGrath Foundation.
  • $18.5 million for the three existing Australian Prostate Cancer Research Centres at Epworth Hospital in Victoria; the Princess Alexandra Hospital in Brisbane; and the Kinghorn Cancer Centre, Sydney.
  • $18.2 million for the continuation of the Youth Cancer Networks program, administered through CanTeen.
  • $5.9 million to continue Cancer Australia’s program to improve outcomes for people with lung cancer.
  • $16.1 million to support continued delivery of the successful National Bowel Cancer Screening Program.
  • $23.8 million additional funding for the Bone Marrow Transplant Program.

Cancer is estimated to be the leading cause of burden of disease in Australia. In 2012, the number of new cases of cancer was predicted to rise to 120,710.

The top five most commonly diagnosed cancers overall for both sexes in 2009, in order, were prostate cancer, bowel cancer, breast cancer, melanoma and lung cancer.

For all media inquiries, please contact:

Minister Plibersek’s Office on 02 6277 7220

Minister Clare’s Office on 02 9790 2466