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New Centre For Multi-Disciplinary Cancer Care

Friday December 16, 2005

New Centre For Multi-Disciplinary Cancer Care

A leading international surgeon and specialist in the management of cancer is visiting Christchurch next week to evaluate a unique proposal for a specialist multi-disciplinary Cancer Centre.

Professor Murray Brennan, from the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York, is a world leader in surgical oncology and multi-disciplinary cancer care. He is also a distinguished graduate of the University of Otago’s Dunedin School of Medicine. He has designed and conducted many clinical trials, which have produced major findings in the management of cancer patients and is the Vice-President of the American College of Surgeons.

Professor Brennan has been invited to Christchurch by the Canterbury Cancer Network to evaluate the establishment of a specialist Cancer Centre under the auspices of the University of Otago and Christchurch Hospital.

The aim is to improve care for people in Canterbury affected by malignant disease by developing the multi-disciplinary management of cancer at one location. This would bring together teams of health professionals from different specialties under one roof.

“This is the modern trend overseas in the management of cancer and it makes a lot of sense,” says Chair of the CCaN, Associate Professor Bridget Robinson. “The issue is whether it will work in Canterbury, and this is why we have invited one of the world’s top experts in integrated cancer care to evaluate our proposal. “

Professor Robinson says such a Centre would bring together under one roof medical and allied health care, along with diagnostic and scientific support for cancer patients. It would also provide more seamless links between clinicians and the community, and extend relationships between health professionals and patient support groups. She says the high quality cancer research being carried out at the Christchurch School of Medicine and Health Sciences would also provide new and more targeted therapies through the Centre.

“Increasing specialisation brings challenges in offering higher quality care to our relatively dispersed population, while new technologies need greater scientific support. All these fast-changing developments in cancer management would be better met through a specialist Cancer Centre.”

Professor Brennan arrives on Monday December 19 from New York and will immediately be involved in a series of meetings with health professionals, health researchers, hospital management and patient support groups. On Tuesday, following further consultation, he will deliver an open lecture on ‘Multidisciplinary Cancer Management” in the Rolleston Lecture Theatre at 12.30pm.

A short biography of Professor Brennan can be found at
Professor Brennan will be staying at the Millennium Hotel in Christchurch


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