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FESTIVAL TO RAISE THE BAR FOR STROKE PATIENTS

Gympie stroke patients will soon be able to access new treatment without having to travel to the Sunshine Coast University Hospital (SCUH) in Birtinya.

Local hospital foundation Wishlist has set its sights on raising funds for a neuro-perfusion package for the recently-installed CT Scanner at Gympie Hospital.

The equipment, valued at $33,000, will be the priority cause for the upcoming Wishlist Jazz and Wine Festival at Gunabul Homestead on Saturday, August 5.

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Sunshine Coast Hospital and Health Service stroke specialist Dr Rohan Grimley said the addition of a neuro-perfusion package would improve access to newer treatments for acute stroke patients living in the Gympie and Cooloola regions.

“It would mean that the ambulance would not have to bypass Gympie Hospital to go to SCUH, and treatment would be initiated much earlier,” Dr Grimley said.

The advanced imaging will also link Gympie Hospital directly with the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital to enhance patient outcomes.

“Specialised treatments to unblock arteries in stroke patients can make a major difference to outcomes, but must be given within 4.5 hours for thrombolysis (clot-busting medication) or six hours for clot retrieval to be effective” Dr Grimley added.

“Currently, patients from Gympie and Cooloola who present with stroke need to be transferred to SCUH to have urgent scans.

“Treatment is time-dependent so enhancing this service at Gympie will no doubt benefit Gympie-based patients in the future.”

Wishlist Jazz and Wine Festival major sponsor Cos Schuh, of Schuh Group, said all funds raised at the Festival would stay in Gympie for the benefit of patients and their families.

Schuh Group is the major sponsor of the 2017 Wishlist Jazz and Wine Festival.

Schuh Group is the major sponsor of the 2017 Wishlist Jazz and Wine Festival.

“Having lived in Gympie for 40 years, our family is acutely aware of the necessity of maintaining a viable and up-to-date hospital facility,” Mr Schuh said.

“Our family would not be unique in having called on the facilities of the hospital many times over our long period of residing in Gympie.

“These additional facilities allow treatment at Gympie which in turn allows families to stay together in often distressing circumstances.”

The Festival is in its second year and will be held on the lawns of Gunabul Homestead featuring first-class jazz and blues entertainment, gourmet food, award-winning wines and a VIP area.

“The first Wishlist Jazz and Wine Festival was amazing – more than 250 people turned out and everyone enjoyed a great afternoon,” Wishlist CEO Lisa Rowe said.

General admission tickets are $50 per person and tickets to the Verandah VIP are $120 per person which includes an all-inclusive catering and beverage package.

“This year is shaping up to be even bigger and we hope the Gympie and Cooloola community can support us in raising much-needed funds.”

Tickets are available at www.wishlist.org.au or to sponsor a marquee, phone 5202 1777.