19 Aug 2008 12:37 PMJann Stuckey

19 August 2008

Jann Stuckey MP, Member for Currumbin, has once again questioned the Queensland Government’s  priority to provide cancer care for Gold Coast patients.

Some Gold Coast patients are being forced to travel to Brisbane for treatment following the resignation of the Gold Coast’s first full-time oncologist after only nine months in the job. 

“Promises by the Health Minister of two full-time oncologists for the Gold Coast last year have not materialised,” Ms Stuckey said.

“It’s the same old story.  Patients on the Gold Coast are simply being placed at the bottom of the list when it comes to providing such important life-saving treatment for cancer sufferers.”

Just 12 months ago Ms Stuckey tabled a petition in State Parliament containing over 5,400 signatures calling for Queensland Health to immediately staff the Gold Coast Hospital with 2 full time medical oncologists to provide cancer services to the Gold Coast community. 

“In response the Government claimed they were improving access to cancer treatments locally on the Gold Coast  to help families cope with what is a most difficult time in their life –  and now they’re telling these people to go to Brisbane because we haven’t got the services to cope on the Gold Coast,” she said.

Ms Stuckey, a long-time advocate for better services at the Hospital, said she found it particularly disturbing as just recently Gold Coast Labor MPs had said that they were happy with the services provided by Queensland Health on the coast.

“Who are they trying to fool?  With a population of half a million people, patients should not have to travel to Brisbane for oncology services.  If these elected representatives are happy about that, then I think they should all be given the boot at the next election as they are not prepared to stand up for people who are fighting to live!

“The Bligh Government continues to short-change our residents by telling them to get to Brisbane if they want basic health treatment.

“How can the people of the Gold Coast have any faith or confidence in this cold and heartless Government when they break promise after promise?”