Altnagelvin Hospital in Derry.
Donegal Action for Cancer Care (DACC) has welcomed the success of the North West Cancer Care centre at Altnagelvin hospital in Derry during its first year of operation.
To the end of November last year, fifty nine patients from Donegal with prostate and breast cancer received radiotherapy at the unit.
Patients from Derry, Strabane, Limavady and Donegal all use the services at the unit in Derry.
Around 500 cancer patients from across the region have used the services in Altnagelvin in its first year.
Around 95 per cent of the patients were outpatients who returned home following their treatment at the hospital.
The £66m centre opened in November, 2016, with an international team of experts at the helm and some of the most advanced technology for treating cancer available anywhere in the world.
The new North West Cancer Care facility marked one year of treating radiotherapy patients on November 30th, 2017 with over 200 staff now basesd at the facility.
Male patients with prostate cancer were the first to receive radiotherapy there, followed by breast cancer patients in March, 2017.
There is a 25 year agreement in place that provides radiotherapy treatment for Donegal patients in Derry.
Spokesperson for DACC, Betty Holmes said: “The fact that cancer patients no longer have to make that very long journey to Galway and Dublin is welcome.”
Ms. Holmes said that when patients can avail of radiotherapy treatment in neighbouring Derry rather than in Dublin or Galway they will not have to spend as much time away from their loved ones as the journey time is greatly decreased.
“Cancer patients being able to go to Altnagelvin Hospital for their radiotherapy makes a major difference,” she said.
Ms. Holmes urged all those who have had surgery in Dublin or Galway to ask about having their radiotherapy treatment in Altnagelvin.
“Feedback from patients and their families to DACC has been excellent.
“It is very important that patients and their families know that when their radiotherapy is being discussed with the team at the hospital they are attending for their surgery that the patients and families can ask to have their treatment at the cancer centre at Altnagelvin.
“This message really needs to get out to Donegal cancer patients,” Ms. Holmes said adding that it was extremely important that people remember this.
DACC continue to work in the best interest of Donegal cancer patients.
DACC will be in existence 13 years this April.
All members are voluntary and unpaid.