Another Piece
Of the Jigsaw


Ballarat Regional Integrated Cancer Centre

Wellness on Wheels

"Wellness on Wheels" aims to deliver complementary therapies, such as oncology massage, art therapy, yoga and shiatsu, to regional centres (free of charge) with the goal of improving accessibility to populations otherwise not receiving these services. Complementary therapies are used alongside conventional cancer treatment to help manage the symptoms and side effects of cancer and its treatment. The addition of complementary therapy programs provides a true integrated approach to patient care.

We are seeking to provide wellness and supportive care programs to cancer patients at Stawell, as a pilot project, with the aims of:

  • Improving access to complementary therapy programs to regional cancer patients led by qualified and experienced therapists
  • Nurturing local complementary therapists through exposure to the oncology programs
  • Reducing travel and associated costs to patients
  • Assist in decreasing distress of patients and improving quality of life
  • Increasing patient satisfaction

Project progress (February 2017)
  • Website booking system is live.
  • High demand for massage. Low demand for Art Therapy and Yoga. It was decided to cease the Art Therapy and Yoga and shift the funding to expand the massage service from fortnightly to weekly.
  • Local massage therapist has been identified, mentored and trained. Is now ready to run the massage sessions on her own which greatly reduces the cost of providing the service.
  • Over 30 people have received massage so far (66% public, 33% private patients). Patients have a wide variety of cancers.
  • Trial finishes in May and is highly likely to carry on given the reduced cost of running the massage sessions and also potential funding sources. Also looking at opportunity to expand program to Horsham.
  • Patient pain/stress measurements are taken before and after treatment