Accessibility and financial impact of treatment major factors affecting
quality of life for survivors.
OTTAWA, June 25, 2013 /CNW/ - According to a new report launched today
by the Canadian Breast Cancer Network (CBCN) and Rethink Breast Cancer,
Canadian women diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer experience a
significant impact on their quality of life and face severe
restrictions in many aspects of their lives.
Metastatic Breast Cancer in Canada: The lived experience of patients and
caregivers, is one of the first reports of its kind in Canada; highlighting the
patient journey by examining the realities and lived experiences of
metastatic breast cancer survivors and their caregivers. The report
details the specific challenges associated with a metastatic breast
cancer diagnosis and emphasizes the impact on survivors' quality of
life, focusing on both the physical and psychosocial aspects of the
disease. The report also explores the patient experience of such themes
as the accessibility of treatment and support resources, access to new
therapies and the financial burden associated with treatment costs.
Report Respondent: "I have been lucky to be living with stable
metastatic breast cancer for nine years. As I continue to beat the odds
for survival I find that there is a gap in supports available to meet
The report aims to provide a first-hand account of metastatic breast
cancer, a disease not frequently addressed outside the breast cancer
community. Metastatic breast cancer refers to cancer that has spread
from the breast to different parts of the body, most commonly the
bones, liver, lungs and brain. It is estimated that in 2013, 23,800
women will be diagnosed with breast cancer, of whom approximately 10%
will have an initial diagnosis of metastatic breast cancer and
approximately 30% of women diagnosed initially with earlier stages of
breast cancer will go on to develop metastatic breast cancer. Yet
despite the large number of women diagnosed with metastatic breast
cancer each year, there remains a persistent lack of awareness and
understanding of the distinct challenges affecting metastatic breast
"Access to the best care can make a significant difference in both the
length of survival and quality of life while on treatments" said MJ
DeCoteau, Founder and Executive Director of Rethink Breast Cancer. "We
need increased access to new, innovative treatments for all metastatic
patients as well as strategies and tools to meet their unique support
needs. This report is a vital jumping off point for those interested in
meeting their needs."
"This compelling report aims to champion the perspectives and voices of
metastatic breast cancer survivors as the first step towards combating
the circle of silence that surrounds the issue of metastatic disease"
said Cathy Ammendolea, Chair of CBCN. "This report provides a timely
opportunity for government officials, healthcare providers and the
general public to gain valuable insights into the challenges facing
metastatic breast cancer patients in Canada," she added.
CBCN is the leading national, survivor-directed breast cancer
organization in Canada. CBCN exists to voice the concerns of breast
cancer survivors and promote the best quality of care for all Canadians
affected by breast cancer. We endeavour to focus national attention on
critical breast cancer issues and ensure that the concerns and needs of
breast cancer survivors are addressed by decision makers in research
and health care policy.
Rethink is the first-ever, Canadian breast cancer charity to bring bold,
relevant awareness to women in their 20s, 30s, and early 40s; foster a
new generation of young and influential breast cancer supporters;
infuse sass and style into the cause; and, most importantly, respond to
the unique needs of young (or youngish) women going through it.
SOURCE: Canadian Breast Cancer Network
For further information:
Note to Editor:
Copies of Metastatic Breast Cancer in Canada: The lived experience of patients and caregivers , are available at www.cbcn.ca. For more information, or to set up an interview, please contact: Jenn McNeil at 613-230-3044 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Canadian Breast Cancer Network Media Inquiries
Rethink Breast Cancer Media Inquires
Ashley Mac Isaac-Butler