The South West region covers an area of 21,639 square kilometres and includes seven counties. For patients, not having to travel to a regional tertiary centre for cancer care can result in a substantial cost saving. Patients do not have the added expense of travel, parking, accommodation, child care, and time off work. The care provided by community partner hospitals is consistent and often planned or co-planned via multi-disciplinary case conferencing with oncology specialist colleagues at the tertiary centre. The economic benefit for tertiary centres lies in the increased ability to care for the right patients at the right time with the right care provider.
How to discuss treatment options with your patients
Many patients are not aware of cancer services available in their own communities. They are often influenced by friends and family members and/or experiences they have heard about in the past. There may be a misconception that care delivered at a larger centre is of better quality than care delivered at a smaller community hospital. This is not the case. Cancer Care Ontario has established quality standards for cancer services to ensure that all Ontarians receive equitable, high quality cancer care, no matter where treatment is received.
As a healthcare provider it is your job to ensure patients are informed of their options for care close to home.
Cancer services available in the region
There are five hospital sites that provide systemic therapy in the region, click here for contact information.