Can Assist and help cancer patients relying on their cars

Media release, 4 May 2020: The Cancer Assistance Network Southern Highlands branch has received funding from to help pay for cancer patients’ green slip insurance.

As COVID-19 creates extra risks and limitations, more cancer patients have to use their own vehicle for transport to treatment. Cancer patients in need, and who rely on their car to get to treatment, are encouraged to ask for financial assistance from Can Assist Southern Highlands.

A cancer diagnosis can bring the additional burden of travelling long distances to treatment. Through a partnership with, Can Assist Southern Highlands has received a funding injection to help ease that burden. The comparative CTP insurance site knows the cost of green slip insurance and recognises the benefits of keeping local cancer patients’ cars on the road when they need them most.

“This contribution from has come at a critical time. We provide $100,000 worth of assistance to local cancer patients each year, however our traditional community fundraising has stopped due to COVID-19 restrictions. With 345 clients on our books and 177 currently receiving treatment, we need $7,000-$9,500 per month to support our local cancer patients. Year-to-date we have funded 756 episodes of assistance for patients,” said Jenny Harper, Can Assist Southern Highlands President.

“Due to COVID-19, requests for assistance are increasing. We have seen a 33% increase in new referrals. More and more people who previously had not sought assistance, are now seeking our help. In March alone we assisted 98 patients,” said Jenny Harper.

Can Assist provides practical and financial support to cancer patients through travel, food and fuel vouchers, and payments towards out-of-pocket costs for cancer related medications. The branch is keen to help more patients in need, especially with payment from for their CTP green slip insurance.

“Patient access to a car is vital to ensure their mobility to treatment. We have two families who need help immediately. A single mum who must travel to Sydney three days a week for her daughter’s leukemia treatment. And a husband driving his wife daily to radiation in Campbelltown. Her treatment is for three weeks so the husband cannot work. It is a big toll on the entire family, financially, physically and emotionally,” said Aurelia Grigore-Reid, Can Assist Southern Highlands Patient Liaison Officer.

“Cancer patients receiving treatment have more out-of-pocket costs due to COVID-19. With compromised immunity during treatment and strict isolation during COVID-19, patients must rely on family or someone they live with to drive them to treatment. Feeling debilitated and frail from treatment, the sanctuary of your own car is deeply helpful,” said Aurelia Grigore-Reid.

Can Assist Southern Highlands is funded entirely by local donations and corporate sponsorship, with all money raised locally staying local. While you won’t currently see the volunteers at their regular fundraising events, Can Assist is still accepting donations and supporting the community.

During COVID-19, patient needs are even more acute and Can Assist remains committed to assisting all local cancer patients.

Can Assist Southern Highlands invites all cancer patients to come forward and seek their support, either personally or referred by a health professional. It is as simple as calling 0474 647 506. All enquiries and ongoing support are strictly confidential and without discrimination. For more information on how to support Can Assist, visit

Media contacts

Sophie Bartho, Mobile 0411 191 141

About Can Assist

Can Assist is committed to ensuring that all people, regardless of where they live in NSW, have access to cancer treatment and care. By providing accommodation, financial assistance and practical support to people from rural and regional areas, it ensures country people are given the same opportunities and treatment choices as those who live in city centres.

Can Assist facts

  • Can Assist provides practical and financial support to people affected by cancer and living in country NSW.
  • Established in 1955, Can Assist is funded entirely by local donations and corporate sponsorships. In 2018, it assisted 7,300 rural and regional cancer patients through 55 branches across NSW.
  • Can Assist is a grass roots, community-based volunteer network. It is local volunteers supporting local families affected by cancer.
  • All the money raised locally stays local.
  • Cancer is expensive, and people in rural and remote communities can suffer reduced income and increased expenses because of a cancer diagnosis. Their position is often exacerbated because treatment may require relocation from home and family support.
  • is a new partner of Can Assist. is a price comparison and information service for CTP green slip insurance. It does not sell CTP green slip insurance.
  • has supported Can Assist branches in Orange, Finley, Dubbo, Armidale, Bega, Balranald, Narrabri, Yass, Bathurst, Tumut, Deniliquin, the Southern Highlands and Wagga Wagga, with commitments to give further support across NSW.

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