THE HON WARREN SNOWDON MP
Minister for Indigenous Health, Rural and Regional Health and Regional Services Delivery
May 25 2010
More than 50 women representing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities as far afield as Alice Springs and the Tiwi Islands, along with Aboriginal Health Workers and other health professionals, are expected to attend a breast cancer summit in Darwin on 26 May.
The Supporting Sisters and Aunties to Survive! Summit, has been funded by the Rudd Government under a $2.7 million Supporting Women in Rural Areas Diagnosed with Breast Cancer Program.
The Minister for Indigenous Health and Rural and Regional Health, Warren Snowdon, said the summit aims to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer, the rural health professionals who treat them, and their families and carers.
“Breast cancer is the most common cancer that women face. We know that at a time of great emotional stress Territory women often have to travel great distances to their treatment, away from their support networks, such as family and friends.
“For Indigenous women, the situation is often worse, because breast cancer is usually detected at a later stage and outcomes are generally poorer than for non-Indigenous women with breast cancer,” Mr Snowdon said.
The summit will be delivered by the National Breast and Ovarian Cancer Centre (NBOCC), and will be hosted by presenters from NBOCC, the Rural Doctors Association of Australia, BreastScreen NT, Cancer Council Northern Territory and the Royal Darwin Hospital.
It will provide information in a culturally-appropriate manner about breast cancer treatment and care and discuss practical initiatives and service delivery needs to help women with breast cancer.
The Supporting Women in Rural Areas Diagnosed with Breast Cancer Program complements other Australian Government breast cancer initiatives. These include:
- $120 million for the latest digital mammography equipment for BreastScreen Australia;
- $168 million for the continued funding of the Herceptin program, providing a therapeutic antibody treatment people with metastatic breast cancer;
- $31 million to reimburse external breast prostheses for women who have had a mastectomy as a result of breast cancer; and
- $12 million to the McGrath Foundation to employ breast care nurses now located in 44 communities across Australia.
In addition, the Rudd Government has committed $560 million to building a national network of best-practice regional cancer centres, to help improve access and support for cancer patients in rural and regional Australia.
Alice Plate (Snowdon) 0400 045 999