The Alaw Cancer Treatment Unit in Ysbyty Gwynedd, Bangor, is set to undergo a major expansion thanks to funding secured through a number of local charities.
Details of the expansion were revealed at a special celebration event to thank previous and current supporters of the Alaw Unit in Ysbyty Gwynedd.
Building work on the £1.17 million project will begin in the new year. The development is being funded exclusively through charitable support, with the Gwynedd Haematology & Cancer Relief Fund pledging £500,000 to support the build. The remaining funding will come from North Wales NHS Charity Awyr Las, the Alaw Fundraising Group, and other long term supporters of the Unit.
The development will double the current number of Cancer treatment consultation rooms and increase the Day Unit’s capacity by 40%, while an increase in specialist treatment areas will enable some patients from North West Wales who currently have to travel to England for treatment to receive their treatment on the Alaw Unit.
The existing Alaw Cancer Treatment Unit was opened in 2000, after a public appeal by the Gwynedd Haematology and Cancer Relief Fund raised £1.2 million pounds to fund the development. Since then, the number of patients receiving treatment on the Unit has doubled, leading to cramped conditions and increased waiting times.
“The demands on the Alaw Cancer Treatment Unit are increasing by as much as 20% every year because of an increase in the number of people being diagnosed with cancer, and patients living longer with the disease,” explained Cancer Services Chief of Staff Sharon Thomas.
She added: “Patients who receive treatment on the Alaw Unit have some of the most positive patient satisfaction scores in Wales, but there is an urgent need to update and expand the Unit to enable us to deliver excellent standards of care for an ever increasing number of patients. The new development will enable us to deliver the very best care that the people of North West Wales deserve.”
Speaking at a special event to celebrate and thank supporters of the Alaw Unit, Dr Huw Roberts said: “The original Alaw Unit was only built thanks to the generosity and hard work of people in communities across North West Wales. The Gwynedd Haematology & Cancer Relief Fund are delighted to be able to once again be in a position to support these important new facilities that will improve the experience of patients with cancer across the region.”
Kirsty Thomson from Awyr Las added: “The Alaw Cancer Treatment Unit is held in extremely high esteem by the ever increasing number of patients that receive treatment there. Without charitable support, this important expansion of the Unit simply couldn’t happen.”