State-of-the-art prostate cancer diagnosis at Exmouth
PUBLISHED: 16:05 20 February 2017 | UPDATED: 16:05 20 February 2017
Exmouth Hospital boasts a state-of-the-art prostate cancer diagnostic service thanks to the tireless fundraising of pensioner Geoff.
Patients in East Devon can now benefit from better access to diagnostic services for prostate cancer at Exmouth Community Hospital thanks to a fundraising mission of one man.
Geoff Fidler, 65, from Exeter, has raised almost £47,000 for the urology team from the Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust to part-fund the purchase of an ultrasound scanner used to diagnose prostate cancer.
Geoff, a retired area operations manager for Great Western Railway, began his fundraising campaign in December 2014 after being treated for prostate cancer.
He recently visited Exmouth Hospital to take a look at the new piece of equipment before it began its first surgical list.
Thanks to the generosity of friends, family, colleagues and local businesses, Geoff raised £46,980 in total.
His wife, Anne, said she was ‘staggered’ by the generosity of everyone who donated.
Geoff said: “I’m just completely overwhelmed by it. Because I’ve been through it myself, it’s amazing to think that this piece of equipment is so much more accurate and much less intrusive, so it will make the experience so much better for other patients.
“We lived in Exmouth ourselves for a few years and are very fond of it, so the fact that our donation has been used to enable East Devon to have a service like this has touched us both.”
Anne said: “All of Geoff’s team at Great Western were just mind-blowing, and the support from my colleagues from Bradley’s in Exmouth was just incredible.”
The additional cost of the £100k scanner was funded thanks to a donation from Devon charity the Chestnut appeal.
Geoff’s fundraising challenge began in December 2014; during a regular check-up he told Consultant Malcolm Crundwell he wanted to raise money to help support the work of the service, setting himself a challenging target of £20,000, organising a host of fundraising events – including sponsored football and golf tournaments, coffee mornings, a car rally from Dawlish to Prague, raffles, bag packing and an auction.
Geoff’s donation will allow local people to undergo the diagnostic procedure at Exmouth Community Hospital rather than having to travel further afield to Exeter, reducing the amount of time they have to wait for the test.
Malcolm Crundwell, consultant urologist and clinical lead for urology, said the new service at Exmouth Hospital allowed for prostate biopsy using state of the art equipment.
He said: “Men in Exeter, East Devon and surrounding areas now have access to the most up to date diagnostic and treatment facilities for prostate cancer in the UK. None of this would be possible without the support of charitable contributions and the tireless work of men like Geoff.”