Perth: Leukaemia Foundation calls for more volunteer drivers to transport patients

 Volunteer driver Laurie Burrows, of Madeley says he is happy to help ease some of the pressure on families.
Volunteer driver Laurie Burrows, of Madeley says he is happy to help ease some of the pressure on families.

THE Leukaemia Foundation wants more volunteers to help transport patients to treatment appointments.

Support services manager Frankie Bird said volunteer drivers were important to help blood cancer patients in Perth.

“When a person is diagnosed with blood cancer, treatment often needs to start within 24 hours,” she said.

“This treatment can range from months, to several years and generally lasts longer than treatment for other cancers.

“Treatment is often very aggressive and always means patients cannot drive immediately afterwards; this is where our team of volunteers comes to the rescue.

“Volunteer drivers pick up patients from their home and transport them to and from appointments at the major treatment hospitals around the metro area, ensuring they are able to receive essential treatment no matter their financial position or family support network.”

Madeley resident Laurie Burrows has been a volunteer driver for seven years, taking patients and their carers to and from treatment one day a week in the Leukaemia Foundation patient transport vehicle.

“After retirement I found I had a little extra time on my hands,” he said.

“I heard the Leukaemia Foundation needed a hand transporting patients to their treatments at hospital, I figured, I have the time, so why not.

“Blood cancer hits people of all walks of life, but it’s the littlies that tug at your heart strings.

“The treatment is never a nice thing for people to go through, so I am glad I can help in this little way by easing the pressure on them and their family.”

The Leukaemia Foundation is currently looking for volunteers who can offer one day a week (Monday, Wednesday or Friday) between 8am and 3.30pm, or assist on a casual basis.

Volunteer drivers are required to hold a current driver’s licence and be able to obtain a police clearance.

Drivers will drive the Leukaemia Foundation patient transport vehicle, located at Balcatta, taking patients and their carers to and from hospital appointments and may also include duties such as vehicle checks and cleaning cars.

Call 1800 620 420 to register.