Cash boost for catch­ing cancer

South Western Times - - News - Ash­wini Saseedaran

THE South West re­gion is set to ben­e­fit from a $1.6 mil­lion ex­pan­sion of the Find Cancer Early pro­gram af­ter the fund­ing boost was an­nounced this month as an ef­fort to save more re­gional West Aus­tralian lives.

Launched in Novem­ber 2011, the aware­ness cam­paign ad­dressed the poorer out­comes re­gional cancer pa­tients faced which showed a sig­nif­i­cant in­crease in pub­lic un­der­stand­ing of signs and symp­toms.

Cancer Coun­cil WA’s South West re­gional ed­u­ca­tion of­fi­cer Shenae Nor­ris said peo­ple in the re­gion would ben­e­fit from the fund­ing in­jec­tion be­cause it would drive early de­tec­tion of cancer and re­duce health­care costs.

“In our last fi­nan­cial year, we had 348 cancer pa­tient check-ins from the South West which was only 12 per cent of the to­tal pa­tient check-ins,” she said.

“Ig­nor­ing the warn­ing signs and al­low­ing the cancer to spread can make treat­ment more dif­fi­cult and re­duce the chances of sur­vival, so the quicker you can re­act to po­ten­tial symp­toms the bet­ter your chance of suc­cess­ful treat­ment.”

Re­cently re­turned from a trip around the South West rolling out the cam­paign’s mes­sage with ed­u­ca­tion ses­sions in towns in­clud­ing Don­ny­brook, Balin­gup, Au­gusta and Duns­bor­ough, Ms Nor­ris said cancer out­comes should not de­pend on post­codes.

“Those liv­ing in the South West re­gion face many health­care bar­ri­ers com­pared to those liv­ing in metropoli­tan Perth,” she said.

“How­ever, it is im­por­tant to iden­tify that we also make ex­cuses for not pre­sent­ing to our gen­eral prac­ti­tion­ers sooner and that we can take con­trol of our cancer out­comes if we know the signs and symp­toms to find cancer early.”

To book a pre­sen­ta­tion con­tact Shenae Nor­ris on 9721 4755.

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