NORTHBRIDGE pharmacist Julie Adams has won WA’s leg of the Telstra Business Woman of the Year.
Ms Adams joined forces with nurse Lorna Cook in 2013 to create Chemo@Home, which as the name suggests allows cancer patients to receive their treatment without having to attend hospital.
Nationally accredited, the pair’s treatment is covered by private health insurance and business is booming; they now send nursing teams as far as Mundaring, Mandurah and Yanchep.
Safest and cheapest
Ms Cook says treating people at home is the safest, easiest and cheapest option.
“The patients are safer in their own home as they are not exposed to the various germs that can be found within hospitals,” she said.
“It also means that patients can avoid the effort of travelling to the hospital, perhaps having to find and pay for parking and other obstacles along the way,” she told the Voice.
“We have treated truck drivers at their truck stops, teachers on their lunch breaks in schools and others in their offices.”
Chemo@Home staff also treat patients with chronic illnesses such as rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis and inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn’s disease.
“The multiple sclerosis patients love the service as they are very limited in mobility so it is a lot of effort to make their way to a hospital,” Ms Cook said.
Unusually, despite the business being a partnership, Ms Adams will travel to Melbourne to compete for the national title without Ms Cook, who withdrew so the pair wouldn’t be competing against each other.
“I didn’t want to compete with her as she was the brains behind the whole business, so she deserved it more,” she said.
“It is wonderful recognition for Julie as it was her vision and courage which started such an innovative and worthwhile service to the community”.
Chemo@Home is in the process of trying to gain state government contracts to treat public patients who can’t afford private health insurance.
The pair will expand the business to Adelaide next month.
by HOLLY COOMEY