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    Risk of coronavirus contributes to growth in chemotherapy at home for Medibank customers

    Recent growth in chemotherapy at home for Medibank customers

    There was a 78% increase in Medibank customers receiving chemotherapy treatment at home between March and April, driven by the coronavirus (COVID-19) health emergency.

    The Medibank at Home chemotherapy trial gives eligible customers the choice to receive treatment in their own home, instead of hospital. For clinically suitable Medibank customers, this service is administered by an oncology nurse in the customer’s own home at a time that’s convenient.

    Medibank Chief Medical Officer Dr Linda Swan said more customers are now wanting to avoid hospital for their regular chemotherapy treatment.

    “Understandably, going to hospital for chemotherapy during this time could be worrying. It has been positive to see more oncologists referring patients to the trial, as well as an increase in enquiries from Medibank customers regarding the program. We hope our customers using Chemotherapy at Home feel assured they’re receiving safe care right now,” Dr Swan said.

    Medibank’s Chemotherapy at Home program is currently available for customers in metropolitan Sydney, Melbourne, Perth and Adelaide, and surrounding areas.

    Dr Swan said the feedback from Medibank customers over the past four years of the trial has included relief from not having to spend more time in hospital or travelling for treatment. Many customers are often too ill to drive or take public transport, with patients relying on a network of carers.

    “It’s imperative that immunosuppressed patients are not exposed to any viruses at all. Our nurses have always been aware of this and we have implemented strict infection control procedures to protect staff and patients to prevent transmission of coronavirus,” added Dr Swan.

    Medibank’s Chemotherapy at Home trial is delivered by View Health Chemo@Home, Australia’s largest community-based provider of home chemotherapy.

    *All data is Medibank data only; does not include ahm.

    About Medibank at Home:

    To find out more about receiving chemotherapy at home, including eligibility, call the Medibank at Home team on 1300 733 338 between 9am and 4pm AEST, Monday - Friday or email medibank.home@medibank.com.au

    To take part, customers must have hospital insurance that covers chemotherapy services, and their treating doctor must consider it appropriate for them. Medibank funds the services which are delivered by qualified and experienced service providers.

    About chemotherapy:

    Chemotherapy, which is often just referred to as ‘chemo’, is the use of drugs to kill or slow the growth of cancer cells. It is usually given intravenously.

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