A CLASSIC charity bike ride which finishes at South West Rocks has donated a $5000 vital signs monitor to the Mid North Coast Cancer Institute at Port Macquarie.
This year's Tour de Rocks boasted a record field of 491 participants, including 384 mountain bike riders and 107 support crew. The riders, aged from seven to 75, tackled the gruelling 255km trail from Armidale to South West Rocks.
Two of the teams competing in this year's event were Gordon Street Cycles and Hat Head Tri Girls, which were represented at the presentation to the Mid North Coast Cancer Institute.
Acting Nurse Unit manager Katie Gooch said the donation brought the cancer unit one step closer to replacing all of its vital signs monitors with the latest wireless models which would transform the way patient data was collected, recorded and analysed at the campus.
"Our Smarter, Safer Vitals Monitoring program is a world-first, developed by the Mid North Coast Cancer Institute where technology is used to integrate our monitors with an oncology-specific electronic medical records system," Ms Gooch said.
"The cancer unit has funded the central data system, but we are hoping the community will help us replace our existing patient monitors with the new wireless models, which are an integral component of the project.
"The program eliminates the need for nurses to manually write down patient vital signs and then transcribe all the observations into a records system. The technology is accurate and fast ... it enables real time clinical decisions to be based on accurate and immediate patient observations, and it means nurses have more time to spend with their patients.
"We are so grateful for this donation from Tour de Rocks, made possible by the participation of teams such as Gordon Street Cycles and Hat Head Tri Girls.
"We are approaching the halfway mark in this community appeal to replace all 12 monitors and are very humbled by the immediate and generous support of our community."
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Gordon Street Cycles team member Ed Godschalk said he was proud of the fundraising effort, but directed his tribute to others.
"It's the sponsors who are the champions through their support with generous donations," Mr Godschalk said.
"All we have to do is ride the bike, which is something we love to do. But, if one more person says it's all downhill from Armidale ... it's a tough ride."