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Urology team to ‘pump the pedals’ in pursuit of enhanced patient care

The Monash Health Urology unit will take to their exercise bikes in a fundraising effort over the weekend of 5-6 December.

Drawing inspiration from the life and legacy of Sir John Monash, unit director Mr Scott Donnellan and Urology trainee Dr David Wetherell have conceived and planned ‘Pump the Pedals for Prostate cancer’ – a virtual bike ride from Melbourne to Sydney. Members of the Urology team will ride in a relay format using Zwift technology which will link riders at Casey Hospital with colleagues and friends across Australia.

Scott Donnellan explained that they aim to raise more than $100,000 to help purchase a new ultrasound device and six probes for prostate biopsies and to provide further funding for prostate cancer nurses in the unit.

“The new ultrasound machine and probes will positively impact patient care and research,” Scott said.

“Having the device will significantly decreased the wait time for patients between first contact and biopsy. We will either clear the patient of cancer or diagnose the condition significantly sooner and allow earlier treatment. This will improve clinical outcomes and help allay some of the patient’s anxiety of the wait and uncertainty,” he said.

“Monash Health will be the first health service in Australia to use a new hand-held device for guiding the biopsies under ultrasound imaging, so we will take the opportunity to incorporate research protocols alongside improved patient care.”

Funds raised at this year’s and future rides will also help to fund additional prostate cancer nurses (PCNs) for the prostate cancer pathway and the new innovation of Australia’s first nurse-led prostate cancer survivorship clinic.

“The survivorship clinic assists patients after they are clear of prostate cancer. Treatment such as surgery can have ongoing impacts on the patient’s quality of life including incontinence, erectile dysfunction and psychological issues,” Scott said.

“This group of problems is now being addressed by the survivorship clinic which is led by prostate cancer nurses. The PCN provides patient-focused continuity of care from the first appointment after the positive biopsy result. The urologist and the PCN meet the patient at this appointment and the same nurse is a point of contact through treatment and recovery to the survivorship clinic.”

The current PCNs are funded through a Victorian Government grant which has just been extended for three years due to the success of the program in Monash Urology.

“We are delighted that Monash Health Chief Executive Andrew Stripp will don the Pump the Pedals cycling jersey and kick off the event. AFL football commentator Brian ‘BT’ Taylor will provide commentary and motivation and other special guests will provide messages of support,” Scott said.

To read more about ‘Pump the Pedals’ visit: www.pumpthepedals.org