In the early 1990s, five New Zealand doctors decided it was time to talk about breast cancer. They were sick of seeing patients turn up too late with cancers that could have been cured if they’d been found easier. One of the big problems was that women were embarrassed to talk about breast cancer, even with each other.
In 1994, they founded The New Zealand Breast Cancer Foundation, and launched the first annual October Pink Ribbon Breast Cancer Awareness Campaign supported by Este´e Lauder.
Since then, many thousands of lives have been saved, thanks to education about breast cancer signs and symptoms, the introduction of NZ’s mammogram screening programme (enabling earlier diagnosis), and advances in treatment.
The name was changed from The New Zealand Breast Cancer Foundation to Breast Cancer Foundation New Zealand (BCFNZ) in 2017.
Throughout the years BCFNZ has played a key part in many milestones in breast cancer awareness and treatment, through their funding of research and medical grants, their education and patient support programmes and their advocacy.
SUPPORT: A breast cancer diagnosis presents many challenges, and they’re not all medical. After your diagnosis, you may benefit from the support services the foundation offer, like free counselling, breast cancer-specific exercise classes, or theirr 0800 BC NURSE helpline.
For more information visit: www.breastcancerfoundation.org.nz