Feb 22
Cold caps available to reduce hair loss for women with breast cancer

​For the first time at Orange Base Hospital, a cold cap machine is available for women with breast cancer, helping reduce the amount of hair lost during chemotherapy.

The cold cap cools the scalp during and after chemotherapy, reducing the blood flow to hair follicles, preventing or minimising hair loss.

McGrath Breast Care Nurse at the Central West Cancer Service, Susan Kuter, said the cold cap was currently being trialled at Orange and if successful the unit would look at purchasing one permanently for the Hospital.

“Many women with a diagnosis of breast cancer actually fear alopecia and hair loss more than the chemotherapy treatment so it's exciting to be able to offer them this opportunity," said Mrs Kuter.

“We are initially trialling this device on women with breast cancer who require three months of chemotherapy as we need to gauge the results in a fairly quick timeframe with a chemotherapy that generally causes hair loss. We currently have three ladies receiving treatment using the cold cap.

“We're trialling the device to see how suitable it is for our patients and how it can be used by our staff and the unit. This will help us plan how we might use a cold cap machine in the future.

“Using the cold cap adds an extra two hours to a normal chemotherapy treatment. The scalp cools the head down to under 22 degrees Celsius by running fluid through the cap which has been chilled to between -1 degrees Celsius and -5 degrees Celsius. This cools the blood flow to the hair follicles so they aren't damaged."

Patient, Ellen Davies, has had one treatment with the cooling cap. The pilot treatment tests hair loss after four cycles of chemotherapy.

“When I was offered the cooling cap and to be part of the trial I was very happy to give it a go because I want to help provide results so it might be available for other women in the future," said Mrs Davies.

“It's a strange feeling having your head cooled down when the rest of your body remains at a normal temperature. My treatment goes for about six hours and I haven't found it too taxing to use."

Each year 151 patients with a new diagnosis of breast cancer are treated in the Orange and Bathurst cancer centres.

The media is invited to attend Ellen Davis' second cold cap session.
Where: Meet outside Orange Base Hospital
When: Friday 23 February at 10:30am
Available spokespeople: Ellen Davies, Susan Kuter and Dr Peter Fox.

Feb 21
Peak Hill gets Physiotherapy services via Tele Health

​A new pilot project at Peak Hill Multi Purpose Service means the local community can now access Western NSW Local Health District physiotherapy services.

The new Virtual Outpatient Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy Service (VOMPS) is now providing communities like Peak Hill the opportunity to access physiotherapy via Tele Health.

Orange Health Service Physiotherapist Amy Archer said that Western NSW Local Health District is committed to improving access to services for people across the district.
“We want to provide care as close to home as possible to reduce the social and financial implications that are associated with travel and time away from home,” said Ms Archer.

“Via Tele Health, and with the help of a clinical support person based in Peak Hill, I am able to assess and treat various musculoskeletal conditions by prescribing exercise, and by providing education and coaching.

“This project is for people who don’t have face to face access to a physiotherapist and need one on one care. This could be someone who has just had surgery, or broken a bone, or someone who has a chronic illness.”

Other suitable people for the program might include:
- Back and neck pain cleared of neurological involvement by their GP
- Peripheral joint issues e.g. shoulder/elbow/knee/hip/ankle
- Post fracture and removal of cast
- Post orthopaedic surgery and need to start moving
- Post mechanical fall with soft tissue injury and/or balance impairment
- Hip and knee osteoarthritis for mobility
- Preparation for surgery e.g. rotator cuff strengthening

Clinics are run fortnightly on Thursdays between 1 – 4pm at Peak Hill Multi Purpose Service. To access the service contact Amy Archer on amy.archer@health.nsw.gov.au.

Thisproject will run until 30 June 2018.

Feb 20
Storm damage to Rylstone Multipurpose Service

​Rylstone Multipurpose Service (MPS) currently remains open for emergencies while damage from last night's storms (Monday 19 February) is assessed and repaired.

Water damage has been caused in parts of the hospital, with staff acting quickly to ensure that areas occupied by patients, included aged care, are safe.

While assessment and immediate repairs are underway, emergency department services will be provided from a different area in the hospital. People coming to the MPS are requested to follow temporary signage and the instructions of staff.

Anyone experiencing an emergency medical condition should dial 000 for an ambulance. Ambulances will take patients to the nearest hospital able to respond to the patient's conditions. For non-emergencies, see your local doctor or contact Healthdirect on 1800 022 222 for health advice and information.

Feb 20
Cobar gets Physiotherapy services via Tele Health

​A new pilot project at Cobar Health Service means the local community can now access Western NSW Local Health District physiotherapy services.

The new Virtual Outpatient Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy Service (VOMPS) is now providing communities like Cobar the opportunity to access physiotherapy via Tele Health.

Orange Health Service Physiotherapist Amy Archer said that Western NSW Local Health District is committed to improving access to services for people across the district.
“We want to provide care as close to home as possible to reduce the social and financial implications that are associated with travel and time away from home,” said Ms Archer.

“Via Tele Health, and with the help of a clinical support person based in Cobar, I am able to assess and treat various musculoskeletal conditions by prescribing exercise, and by providing education and coaching.

“This project is for people who don’t have face to face access to a physiotherapist and need one on one care.
This could be someone who has just had surgery, or broken a bone, or someone who has a chronic illness.”

Other suitable people for the program might include:
- Back and neck pain cleared of neurological involvement by their GP
- Peripheral joint issues e.g. shoulder/elbow/knee/hip/ankle
- Post fracture and removal of cast
- Post orthopaedic surgery and need to start moving
- Post mechanical fall with soft tissue injury and/or balance impairment
- Hip and knee osteoarthritis for mobility
- Preparation for surgery e.g. rotator cuff strengthening

Clinics are run fortnightly on Tuesdays between 1 – 4pm at Cobar Health Service. To access the service contact Amy Archer on amy.archer@health.nsw.gov.au.

Thispilot is currently scheduled to run until June 2018.

Feb 20
Lightning Ridge gets Physiotherapy services via Tele Health

​A new pilot project at Lightning Ridge Multi Purpose Service means the local community can now access Western NSW Local Health District physiotherapy services.

The new Virtual Outpatient Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy Service (VOMPS) is now providing communities like Lightning Ridge the opportunity to access physiotherapy via Tele Health.

Orange Health Service Physiotherapist Amy Archer said that Western NSW Local Health District is committed to improving access to services for people across the district.
“We want to provide care as close to home as possible to reduce the social and financial implications that are associated with travel and time away from home,” said Ms Archer.

“Via Tele Health, and with the help of a clinical support person based in Lightning Ridge, I am able to assess and treat various musculoskeletal conditions by prescribing exercise, and by providing education and coaching.

“This project is for people who don’t have face to face access to a physiotherapist and need one on one care. This could be someone who has just had surgery, or broken a bone, or someone who has a chronic illness.”

Other suitable people for the program might include:
- Back and neck pain cleared of neurological involvement by their GP
- Peripheral joint issues e.g. shoulder/elbow/knee/hip/ankle
- Post fracture and removal of cast
- Post orthopaedic surgery and need to start moving
- Post mechanical fall with soft tissue injury and/or balance impairment
- Hip and knee osteoarthritis for mobility
- Preparation for surgery e.g. rotator cuff strengthening

Clinics are run fortnightly on Tuesdays between 9am –12 pm at Lightning Ridge Multi Purpose Service. To access the service contact Amy Archer on amy.archer@health.nsw.gov.au.

Thisproject will run until 30 June 2018.

Feb 20
Bourke gets Physiotherapy services via Tele Health

​A new pilot project at Bourke Multi Purpose Service means the local community can now access Western NSW Local Health District physiotherapy services.

The new Virtual Outpatient Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy Service (VOMPS) is now providing communities like Bourke the opportunity to access physiotherapy via Tele Health.

Orange Health Service Physiotherapist Amy Archer said that Western NSW Local Health District is committed to improving access to services for people across the district.
“We want to provide care as close to home as possible to reduce the social and financial implications that are associated with travel and time away from home,” said Ms Archer.

“Via Tele Health, and with the help of a clinical support person based in Bourke, I am able to assess and treat various musculoskeletal conditions by prescribing exercise, and by providing education and coaching.

“This project is for people who don’t have face to face access to a physiotherapist and need one on one care. This could be someone who has just had surgery, or broken a bone, or someone who has a chronic illness.”

Other suitable people for the program might include:
- Back and neck pain cleared of neurological involvement by their GP
- Peripheral joint issues e.g. shoulder/elbow/knee/hip/ankle
- Post fracture and removal of cast
- Post orthopaedic surgery and need to start moving
- Post mechanical fall with soft tissue injury and/or balance impairment
- Hip and knee osteoarthritis for mobility
- Preparation for surgery e.g. rotator cuff strengthening
Clinics are run fortnightly on Tuesdays between 9am –12 pm at Bourke Multi Purpose Service. To access the service contact Amy Archer on amy.archer@health.nsw.gov.au.

Thisproject will run until 30 June 2018.

Feb 19
Oberon Health Council needs you

​Oberon Health Council is looking for new members from the local community to fill current vacancies.

Oberon Health Council provides an opportunity for people living in Oberon to identify the health, wellness needs and priorities of their community and the services that are required to support it.

Health Council Chairperson, David Young, said the Health Council advocates on behalf of the community on health and well-being services that may affect them.

"The priorities of Oberon Health Council for the next two years include bringing public dental services to Oberon Multipurpose Service, resolving the local issue of fluoridation of the town water supply, promoting exercise participation in Oberon and reviewing existing health services in the context of a changing community demographic."

Health Service Manager at Oberon Multipurpose Service, Christine Symington, is encouraging people from all walks of life to apply to be a member on the Health Council.

"They may, but do not need to have health professional experience. In fact, applicants without a health professional background are particularly welcome as they are able to bring a truly independent consumer perspective to their role" said Christine Symington.

"We are also looking for young people to join the Health Council and value the various points of views our members can offer. Membership requires attendance at monthly Health Council meetings and there are opportunities to participate on committees and workshops associated with your personal areas of interest from time to time."

Over the past few years the Health Council has participated in the Healthy Town Challenge and worked with Oberon Council to install several fresh water drinking stations around the town area.

For an application kit or for more information contact Christine Symington on 6336 7210.

Feb 12
Health Alert - Smoke from bush fires in Orange and surrounds

​The district of Orange is currently experiencing high levels of smoke from bush fires on Mount Canobolas and surrounding forests. This may cause problems for people with asthma, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) or other lung diseases.

To reduce the risk of exacerbating your condition:

  • Stay indoors – close doors and windows, block off any drafts with door snakes or towels
    Use fans or coolers to circulate internal air
  • Shopping – ask a relative or friend to get items for you or use online shopping options
  • Medications – make sure you take any regular medications as per the instructions and if you need to leave the house or are required to evacuate take current medications and puffers with you. Ensure medication, particularly puffers, have not expired
  • Drink plenty of fluids – preferably water
  • If you start experiencing any symptoms refer to your asthma or COPD management plan and see your local doctor. Ask for a home visit if this is available.
  • If symptoms are unrelieved, or worsening call an ambulance.
Feb 12
Grenfell MPS gets a new look

​Grenfell Multipurpose Health Service will begin flooring upgrades this week (starting Monday 12 February) with flooring being removed and replaced in the Acute ward.

Grenfell Health Service Manager, Pauline Rowston, said hospital staff are looking forward to the new flooring creating a brighter atmosphere for the hospital and for people accessing services.

“We are aiming to minimise disruption to service delivery as much as possible during the renovation process.

“The renovations will be in the acute bed ward and will take approximately four weeks. The Aged Care area is not affected and the Emergency Department will continue to function as usual.

“If necessary, people from the community requiring admission may be relocated to other hospitals.”

Clear signage will be visible to help people navigate the parts of the hospital under renovation.

Feb 09
Credit due to Nyngan Health Service

​Nyngan Health Service was recently awarded two ‘Met with Merits’ for actions being taken to improve the safety and quality of patient care as part of a recent accreditation audit.

Nyngan Health Service is accredited under the National Safety and Quality Healthcare standards. The 10 Standards include Clinical Governance, Partnering with Consumers, Medication Safety, Blood Management and more.

Jennifer Griffiths, Health Service Manager for Nyngan Health Service said the Standards protect the community and improve the quality of health services.

“Nyngan Health Service met all 254 actions which make up the 10 national standards,” said Ms Griffiths.
“The independent auditor highlighted that staff at Nyngan Health Service look for ways to improve the quality of outcomes for patients and residents. They also found that a project aimed at improving the wellbeing of residents has also increased teamwork across all departments.

“We recognise that Accreditation is an important driver for safety and quality improvement and Australia’s health accreditation processes are highly regarded internationally.

“The Standards have been designed for all health services and provide a nationally consistent statement of the level of care consumers should expect from health services.”

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No, this isn't actually my picture. I just haven't gotten around to updating this section. It's good to know that someone is reading every last word though. Thanks!