GHA treats half of all chemotherapy patients on the Rock
Half of all chemotherapy patients in Gibraltar are being treated locally since the unit was formally opened at St Bernard’s Hospital last year. So far 49 patients with chemotherapy and immunotherapy regimes have been treated on the Rock in the first nine months of the Gibraltar Health Authority’s Chemotherapy Day Unit.
There are a further 50 patients receiving treatment abroad.
Solid tumours are treated at the GHA chemotherapy unit – the Ayling-Buttigieg Chemotherapy Unit. This means that patients with cancers including “breast, prostate, stomach, lung and colon” are given the choice of being treated at St Bernard’s Hospital.
However, those with cancers of the blood such as lymphoma are not eligible for local treatment as radiotherapy is not available locally. These patients need to continue treatment abroad.
The local suite only took on new chemotherapy patients as the GHA wished to refrain from interfering with ongoing treatment abroad.
Patients have received and are receiving preventative, curative and palliative treatments locally for “lung, breast, digestive, colorectal, urology, gynaecology and brain” cancers.
Additionally, other non-chemotherapy infusions needed for cancer patients, in order to support their disease in a preventative or palliative way, are given at the Chemotherapy Day Unit, and this has also seen an increase in the numbers attending.
Radiotherapy treatment is still given abroad and patients continue to also receive chemotherapy at Xanit and Clinica Radon in Spain and at the Royal Marsden in the UK.
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