My 14 year-old son Scott is battling cancer. It's taken his arm and tumors are in his lungs -- something that's changed our lives completely and forever. But soon, giving Scott everything he needs to recover could become just that much harder: the family facilities that we use when he's going through chemo are being removed in plans for the new hospital wards.
The government has a simple choice: they can save a tiny bit of money and put kids lives at risk, or they can decide they want to give kids with cancer the best chance of surviving.
Scott was never a big kid. We've had to work hard to make sure he's fed well to get him through the chemo, which thankfully is working, finally. Often times it's meant us cooking special meals for him at odd hours or cooking his favourite: roast chicken.
But the new Queensland Children's Hospital plans don't show any family facilities like a kitchen and laundry in the oncology ward -- One of the things that's been so important in helping his recovery and that of lots of families could be gone in the new hospital.
I'm worried about what impact it'll have. This might seem like a small thing, but it's actually so important I think it could be part of the difference between Scott surviving cancer or not.
I’m also worried about what message this sends. If anything shouldn't our government should be doing more to support families going through this? Having your son or daughter be struck with cancer like Scott has is a nightmare I wouldn't wish on anyone. We need to support people going through this.
We're not asking for anything flash, just the basics, like we currently have at the Royal Children’s Hospital: an oven and stove so we can bake together, a dining table to share a meal, and a washer and dryer so we can launder our kids clothes when they’re sick.
Please will you sign the petition Scott and I have started asking the government to keep a family kitchen and laundry in the new hospital plans?
All of the families here at the oncology ward thank you dearly for the support.