SAINT Bernard’s Hospital in Gibraltar opened new ‘first class’ visiting and consultation areas to its cancer clinic to be more ‘supportive’ to patients, the government said.

The refurbishment followed the yearly amount of patients being treated in Gibraltar as opposed to travelling abroad rising from 1,872 in 2018 to 5,861 last year.

Now the Gibraltar Health Authority expect as many as 7,000 people to be treated at the Oncology ward in St Bernard’s Hospital.

“This is an initiative that has made an enormous difference to our cancer patients, offering a space to see their doctor,” GHA Director General Patrick Geoghegan said:

“This area has more privacy and amenities – in the coming weeks bloods extractions will be performed here too.”

Gibraltar’s public health provider already has two full-time and one visiting cancer consultant.

It also has a clinical nurse specialist and three chemotherapy nurses as well as a pharmacist, nurse assistants, pharmacy technician and clerks.

“This is only one of the steps in a bigger plan for Gibraltar cancer patients as we modernise the hospitals facilities,” Geoghegan said.

“We plan to include a new larger cancer unit as a location where patients can receive their treatment with sea views in a first world environment.

“While this is work in progress, we are extremely optimistic that we can achieve this change going forward,” he added.

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