Calvary Connery Centre treats first patient

 An unexpected breast cancer detection during a routine mammogram changed Peta Matthews’ life, and this week she became patient number one at Calvary’s new state-of-the art $4.75 million Connery Centre in Elizabeth Vale.

Meet Peta

The 52-year-old Salisbury Park mother of two daughters, was diagnosed with cancer in February this year and began her chemotherapy treatment at Calvary’s Central District Hospital.

On Tuesday, supported by her mother, Ms Matthews was greeted with an applause, by the same caring Calvary team she has come to know before being seated in Chair 1 at 8.30am in Calvary’s Connery Centre at the Playford Health Hub.

As she took her seat to prepare for a chemotherapy session, volunteer Julie Gibson quickly tended to her with a warm smile and welcome to the new facility, before promptly draping a soft white blanket across Ms Matthews’ lap for extra warmth and comfort. Nurse Krista Reynolds then began preparing Ms Matthews for her treatment.

Other than the change of location from the existing oncology and haematology service at Calvary Central Districts Hospital to the new Connery Centre, the same caring and qualified staff and friendly faces ensures patients and their carers receive uninterrupted, quality care.

“We’ve still got the same staff and they are amazing and they make this service what it is, but this is a really lovely new space, the colours are beautiful and relaxing.”

“The old place was a little bit squished and there was a feeling you were just surrounded by sick people, because we all are, but this space has so much more extra room and it makes such a difference when you want to have a private conversation,” Ms Matthews said.

The Calvary Connery Centre represents the only private facility of its kind between Calvary North Adelaide Hospital and the Barossa, and Ms Matthews said having a cancer service in the growing region made accessing care closer to home easier, especially when going through a long care journey.

Nurse Reynolds said it was wonderful to be providing care to Ms Matthews, and all patients, in the new environment.

“It’s very exciting to be in the new building and while we’re still providing the same care, it’s a great feeling to be doing it in this environment for our patients,” she said.