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BCNA News 07 Mar 2018

Help us help breast cancer survivors post treatment

Every day 50 Australians will be diagnosed with breast cancer. The chance of surviving at least five years is now 90 percent and there are over 200,000 Australians living today who have been diagnosed with breast cancer.

While they have survived, many of these Australians have had their lives turned upside down and are struggling to cope with ‘the new normal’. Post-treatment, survivors are left with horrible life-changing side effects and find that many support services stop after treatment, so they’re left to cope alone.

Kathy was diagnosed with breast cancer in November 2004. Following surgery to remove a tumour and a course of radiation, Kathy developed lymphoedema causing her considerable, ongoing pain and discomfort.

‘When I finished treatment I felt a huge sense of relief and thought that my life would return to normal. I didn’t realise that the side effects of my treatment were going to have an impact on all areas of my life – physical, mental and emotional.

I had an active job as a restaurant manager prior to breast cancer but due to my pain I couldn’t work and my husband and I had to sell our restaurant and downsize our home.’

The project: Survivorship Tool

BCNA is developing an online tool to allow breast cancer survivors to navigate life post-treatment. The tool will tailor the provision of information resources according to women’s specific survivorship needs, based on their self-selection from a menu of options. This will empower women to plan and self-manage their survivorship care, based on tailored, high-quality, evidence-based information resources.

We are also advocating to reduce out of pocket expenses for services such as lymphoedema, as well as increase the services available.

But to do this, we need to raise $120,000. Please make a generous gift to BCNA to help change the lives of breast cancer survivors.

How your donation can help:

$65 – Can help BCNA advocate to change the system to reduce the out of pocket costs for services such as lymphoedema as well as increase the services available.

$108 – Can provide Helpline staff to assist with navigating the services available to those living after a breast cancer diagnosis.

$231 – Will allow us to develop an online tool that will help prioritise the many issues that our members will be facing and provide quality personalised information at the right time.