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  • Cooling caps for cancer patients at Frankston Hospital

    Frankston Hospital is one of the first public hospitals in the state to offer cancer patients scalp cooling while they undergo chemotherapy to help prevent a common side effect of treatment – hair loss.

    Last week Crib Point mother-of-three Angela Fox was the very first patient to have scalp cooling, which chills the head and works by reducing the amount of chemotherapy drugs reaching the hair follicles.

    “It’s a marvellous opportunity to have all of this technology in a public hospital, which basically helps you keep your dignity while you’re having all of this treatment done,” says Angela.

    “Hair is fairly important – if you’ve still got your hair a lot of people don’t realise what you’re going through and that’s a good thing.”

    Up to four patients can have scalp cooling during chemotherapy at one time, thanks to a grant from Perpetual Trustees on behalf of RP medical Fund, ...

  • Helping kids and adults with bowel and bladder problems

    When kids and adults on the Peninsula experience bowel and bladder problems, Camille Edgar and the Continence Team at Peninsula Health are here to help.

    “We see people from all walks of life with different severity of urinary incontinence, prolapse, prostate problems, bowel incontinence, constipation and more,” explains Camille, Manager of Peninsula Health’s Continence Service.

    “My team will also be working with NDIS participants aged up to 65 years, to help support them with all their continence needs, products, therapy and nursing assessments.”

    More than 5 million Australians experience bowel and bladder incontinence, where urine, wind and faeces are involuntarily discharged.

    It’s currently World Continence Week which is encouraging people to talk about continence, a topic many people shy away from, even around their friends and family.

    A nurse for 18 years, Camille decided to specialise in continence after working with the Royal District Nursing Service and caring for many patients ...

  • Don’t put it off – get checked for bowel cancer today

    Head of Oncology, Dr Zee Wan Wong and patient Liz Yates. 

    Bowel cancer doesn’t just affect older people – it affects people of all ages – such as local Mum Liz Yates, who was diagnosed aged 41.

    “I didn’t get any of the normal symptoms,” explains Liz.

    “I lost quite a bit of weight and was just not feeling great within myself so I knew something was going on, but I never thought it would be bowel cancer.”

    Liz is now undergoing treatment at Peninsula Health’s Frankston Chemotherapy Day Unit.

    “I haven’t experienced any terrible side-effects from the chemo. I’ve lost some hair but I still function as normal.” Liz says.

    “Everyone, all the nurses are fantastic. We have a laugh and a joke and it makes the day better. They really are a great bunch down there.”

    Demand continues to grow for our oncology service, which is why ...

  • Making a trip to theatre more fun and friendly for kids

    Pictures of planes, monkeys, trees and even the famous SpongeBog SquarePants now adorn the walls of pre-operative and recovery spaces in theatres at Frankston Hospital, thanks to Clinical Nurse Specialist Alicia Campbell.

    “The operating suite is a very overwhelming place and I wanted to make it more child friendly with bright colours and cartoons they can relate to,” explains the theatre nurse, who is also a Mum to two young kids herself.

    “Having an operation causes a lot of mixed emotions for individuals. I wanted to try and reduce these anxious feelings with distractions on the walls to encourage a sense of calm for children coming to theatre."

    Alicia contacted local company Two Little Giggles, who donated the wall decals for the paediatric areas in the Frankston Hospital Surgical Services Suite.

    "The boring white walls have been transformed with bright, fun and happy wall art, thanks to the generous donation from Two Little Giggles,” ...

  • Baby Gussie thriving after surviving life-threatening infection

    Baby Gussie will celebrate his first birthday in August – a milestone his Mum thinks he would not have made if it wasn’t for the care of the paediatric team at Frankston Hospital.

    “Gussie was born weighing 5.14 pounds, which is small, but we took him home and he was a really good baby,” recalls Mum Tenille.

    “He was feeding great, he cried and wriggled around, but he just wasn’t putting on weight.”

    After a few weigh-ins with the local Child Maternal Health Nurse found Gussie still wasn’t gaining weight, Tenille was advised to take her 9 day old baby straight to the Emergency Department.

    “I went to Emergency and I and was sitting on the bed with the bub while the doctors tried to work out why he wasn’t putting on weight," says Tenille.

    “He was feeding ok and didn’t have a temperature. He was a funny colour but because his ...

  • Allied Health Assistant set to retire after 37 years at Peninsula Health

    Heather Trinca will retire later this month after spending almost four decades of her life working at Peninsula Health.

    Over this time she has seen the organisation change from a small country hospital to the large metropolitan health service that it is today.

    One of her first roles was working at the Rosebud Day Hospital.

    “I had only been in Australia after moving from New Zealand for a few years, when a friend encouraged me to apply for the job,” recalls Heather.

    “The job was an Occupational Therapy (OT) Assistant, helping patients do arts and crafts.”

    “I was an office secretary up until then so I had no qualifications in the space but I thought I like crafts so I’ll go for it.”

    “The OT would pick an activity, such as basket weaving or knitting or woodwork for the men, and I’d help them do it.”

    This was the start of Heather’s allied ...

  • Local girls sell slime to support Cancer Services at Frankston Hospital

    Cousins Mikayla and Holly and their great-grandmother Nana Val. 

    When their great-grandmother “Nana Val” started undergoing cancer treatment at Frankston Hospital, cousins 10-year-old Holly and 12-year-old Mikayla decided they wanted to do something to help.

    “They asked if they could go down to the shops and buy ingredients to make slime to sell,” explains Holly’s Mum Danielle.

    “They made the slime and then they set up a little stall out the front of our house with a sign saying it was for Frankston Hospital.”

    Neighbours came by, donated and bought the slime, much to the delight of the young fundraisers.

    Nana Val, the inspiration behind their efforts, has melanoma. After having an operation, the 90-year-old is now having regular infusions ...

  • Footy legend supports cancer fundraiser in honour of his late Mum

    Hawthorn premiership player Gary “Bucky” Buckenara knows all too well the devastating effect cancer can have on families – his Mum passed away after a short battle with cancer just before turning 60.

    This winter, he's supporting Take a Break for Cancer and helping to raise funds for Cancer Services at Frankston and Rosebud Hospitals.

    “When you get the opportunity to help a cause which, is dear to your heart, you do everything you can to support it,” says Rosebud resident Gary.

    “Cancer is something which effects a lot of people – it certainly touched our family. My mother passed away with ovarian cancer when she was 59, it was quite young.”

    “Our children were just babies then. It would have been nice for her ...

  • Surviving and thriving with cancer

    When Somers local Linda Wilson was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer six years ago, she made a decision to live life to the fullest. She has been able to do just that while staying in her local community, thanks to the oncology team at Frankston Hospital.

    “The five-year survival rate for people with pancreatic cancer is 7%,” explains the 61-year-old mother of three. 

    “Being a nurse and knowing what pancreatic cancer is like I decided from the day I was diagnosed, I wasn’t going to waste a minute of it being miserable.”

    “I was told my cancer was incurable so I asked the question ‘that’ you don’t really like to ask – I was told I probably had 6-12 months, if I was lucky.”

    However, just over five years later Linda has beaten ...

  • Health professionals don colourful socks to raise awareness of doctors’ mental health

    1 June 2018

    Ms Felicity Topp, Miss Annette Holian, Dr Geoff Toogood, Mr Paul Edbrooke MP and Associate Professor Tony Walker.

    Doctors, medical students and health professionals around the world are today wearing outlandish, zany and bright socks in support of doctors’ mental health.

    Peninsula Health cardiologist Dr Geoff Toogood started #CrazySocks4Docs last year. The campaign gained such momentum that it trended on Twitter and reached more than one million people.

    “We had doctors across Australia, America and Europe supporting #CrazySocks4Docs and this year is even bigger,” said Dr Toogood, who started the campaign after his own battle with mental illness.

    “The purpose of #CrazySocks4Docs is to raise awareness about mental illness in the medical profession and also to get doctors to start talking about it.”

    “Having a conversation with your friends, family or colleagues about your mental health is the first step. Doctors need to ...