Glenn McGrath Breast Care Nurse in Tamworth:
THE McGrath Foundation has hit back at reports they won’t be servicing the city with a breast care nurse, in an open letter to Tamworth that explains that an offer was recently turned down.
The letter also stated that despite declining the offer of a McGrath nurse, that Tamworth could in fact be in line for a breast care nurse, although this could not be locally confirmed.
The response comes just a day after Glenn McGrath had a role as guest speaker cancelled by the Tamworth Business Chamber and a week after the Test great told The Leader, in person, that Tamworth wasn’t in line to get a nurse in the near future.
“Over the past few days we’ve refrained from commenting on the media coverage appearing in Tamworth, due to the confidential nature of ongoing negotiations over the past six months,” the letter read.
“We now feel compelled to respond to provide clarity on information that has been misrepresented to the community.”
Many organisations and individuals have been striving for Tamworth to get a full time breast care nurse for close to five years, and it was hoped that it would come to fruition this year.
The letter states that the McGrath Foundation did in fact make an offer that had been declined by Tamworth “business and community stakeholders”, although they refused to identify who those stakeholders were.
“On Monday 23 January we received written notification that a decision had been made “to decline the offer of 0.5FTE from the McGrath Foundation towards a breast care nurse,” the letter stated.
“The correspondence also stated that local funding would be allocated with “the model of care enabling patients to be seen by the Nurse at the time of surgery, in both the public and private hospitals, prior to the next stages in their treatment journey.”
Open letter to Tamworth community from the McGrath Foundation
Over the past few days we’ve refrained from commenting on the media coverage appearing in Tamworth due to the confidential nature of ongoing negotiations over the past six months, and out of respect for other parties involved in those discussions.
We now feel compelled to respond to provide clarity on information that has been misrepresented in the community.
The McGrath Foundation is a national organisation with a mission of ensuring that every family in Australia experiencing breast cancer can see a breast care nurse, no matter where they live – for free. We have a research-based approach to identifying priority areas of need, which also takes into account whether the local community has the support of a breast care nurse.
For the past six months, we have been engaged in active discussions with business and community stakeholders in Tamworth to bring a McGrath Breast Care Nurse to the region. On Monday 23 January we received written notification that a decision had been made “to decline the offer of 0.5FTE from the McGrath Foundation towards a breast care nurse.”
The correspondence also stated that local funding would be allocated with “the model of care enabling patients to be seen by the Nurse at the time of surgery in both the public and private hospitals prior to the next stages in their treatment journey.”
Although this correspondence provided a clear instruction that our support was not required in Tamworth, we do not believe this model of care will provide the best outcome for families with breast cancer in Tamworth and the surrounding area.
The McGrath Foundation is committed to helping families affected by breast cancer in Tamworth receive the best care and service possible. As the largest group of breast care nurses in Australia, our proven model ensures:
· Care and support to patients and their families to optimise the individual’s health and well-being at all phases of treatment, including diagnosis, surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, rehabilitation, emotional and psychosocial support, referral to and coordination with other services, follow-up and palliative care
· A robust, national programme offering evidence-based clinical care and ongoing collaboration and professional development for nurses
·Sustainable funding over a minimum three-year period, providing continuity and consistency to the community.
Even though the clear direction from the business and community stakeholders was that our support was not required, based on what we know of the current plans we do consider that Tamworth remains an area of need for a McGrath Breast Care Nurse.
We are in current negotiations with the area health service to place a McGrath Breast Care Nurse in Tamworth to ensure the community is best serviced. While ongoing negotiations are confidential, we hope to make an announcement soon.
We wish to assure the people of Tamworth that we are very grateful for their support of the McGrath Foundation. We hope that the negotiations conclude positively so that we can place a McGrath Breast Care in Tamworth shortly.
Chief Executive Officer