Ambo Noel rallies the forces

Noel O'Mara.

Noel O’Mara spent 27 years delivering babies, attending crashes and deaths but he’s still not done helping people.

The frontline paramedic and gastro-oesophageal cancer survivor is now a Lived Experience Ambassador with Bloomhill Cancer Care and is launching its annual fundraiser Be There for Bloomhill this June.

Noel was diagnosed with gastro-oesophageal cancer in 2019. It was a shock, and the surgery, chemotherapy and radium therapy that saved his life were also “an assault on my body” with ambulance officer naming his tumour Hitler and the chemo Allied Forces.

Noel was diagnosed with gastro-oesophageal cancer in 2019. It was a shock, and the surgery, chemotherapy and radium therapy that saved his life were also “an assault on my body”.

“My specialist, knowing I had the stomach for that kind of talk [being an ambo], actually said ‘mate, you know what we have to do for open heart surgery? That’s a walk in the park compared to what’s going to happen to you’.

“I was in theatre for 11 hours – what a marathon for him and the surgical team. I’ve got the scars to show for it – but I’m alive to tell the tale, and for that I’m truly thankful.”

A Mons resident and Ambulance service executive, Noel heard about Bloomhill from a nurse, during chemotherapy treatments.

“I met a remarkable nurse, who explained so many things to me, like how cancer can get in your head, what you can do about that, and about the scars and how to alleviate discomforts and address pain,” he said.

“I hadn’t been game to let anyone touch my scars but Audrey, Deb and Neila (Bloomhill massage therapists) have each been able to do wonderful relaxing ‘soft touch’ massage and cold laser treatment for me that has been so beneficial.”

“The laser treatment has helped reduce the scars significantly as you can see in my before-and-after photos.”

Bloomhill is the biggest community-based cancer support organisation in the region.

Each they support around 1,100 clients through our nursing care and provide over 800 allied health care and wellness appointments at our centre in Buderim.

Bloomhill is turning 25 years old in 2022, and planning an expansion from five to 14 therapy rooms, including a new gym and redeveloping the café, to meet the growing demand for their care services.

All donations over $2AUD are fully tax-deductible in Australia. To donate visit www.bloomhill.com.au

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