Care Close to Home in Woodstock

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

For Ruth Baker and Dawn Alexander, there’s no place like home.  Earlier this year, Ruth and Dawn completed chemotherapy treatment for breast cancer.  What makes their journey unique involves their proximity to care. These two women were among the first to receive chemotherapy treatment within their own community.

In May, hospital employees, partners, patients and survivors gathered at Woodstock General Hospital to celebrate the opening of the chemotherapy clinic. The expanded clinic in Woodstock brings quality chemotherapy services to the community of Woodstock and Oxford County. The redistribution of cancer services throughout the region will help to improve the cancer experience for patients like Ruth and Dawn. Decentralizing less complex chemotherapy treatments to community hospitals ensures timely access to accurate diagnosis and safe, high quality care. 

“It’s important for the public to know that care received in community hospitals is the same care that is received in larger centres,” says Neil Johnson, Regional VP, South West Regional Cancer Program. “Care delivered close to home offers many benefits, including the support of friends and family, as well as reduced travel time.”

It is estimated that the chemotherapy clinic in Woodstock will collectively save residents of Oxford County more than 250,000 km in travel expenses and over 3,600 hours in travel time. The Clinic operates five days per week and can now accommodate up to 270 systemic therapy clients (2,700 visits) per year, an increase from 75 cases (750 visits) per year previously.

“(Care close to home) is an important step to recovery and getting on with your life as quickly as possible,” says Ruth Baker.

To learn more about Ruth and Dawn’s cancer care journey, watch their video on YouTube.

Photo: The ribbon cutting officially opened the Chemotherapy Clinic on May 16. Pictured left to right: Neil Johnson, Regional VP, South West Regional Cancer Program; Dawn Alexander, Chemotherapy Patient; Natasa Veljovic, President & CEO, Woodstock Hospital; Ruth Baker, Chemotherapy Patient; and Ed Down, Chair, Woodstock Hospital Board of Trust.