Sunday 22 September 2019

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Cancer survivors’ needs are not being met

Wednesday, 4th September, 2019 4:59pm

Many of Ireland’s cancer survivors are currently living without crucial ongoing medical and non-medical care support.

That’s according to Dr Conan Donnelly of the National Cancer Registry of Ireland (NCRI) who is currently campaigning for more emphasis to be put on the continued support of patients who have survived cancer in Ireland.

“Since the 1990s, cancer prevalence has increased by about 85 per cent and we expect that to continue to increase, largely due to Ireland's ageing population,” Dr Donnelly told the Cork Independent.

He continued: “But the good news is that the amount of people surviving cancer is also increasing, and that's to do with improvements in screening and treatment.”

According to a report compiled by Dr Donnelly, there are more than 200,000 cancer survivors alive in Ireland today, many of whom are in need of continued care.

The report states that cancer treatments such as surgery, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy may have a long-term impact on people’s health and result in day-to-day practical difficulties.

“These needs are not just restricted to physical symptoms. There can be social and psychological impacts, as well as financial strain, issues relating to sexuality, and family related issues,” said Dr Donnelly.

Dr Donnelly will join a host of local and international cancer treatment experts at the Breaking Through: Research to Transform Cancer Treatment conference which begins this evening, Thursday, at 7pm in Devere Hall in UCC.

The one and a half day conference is hosted by Breakthrough Cancer Research and will see international experts speak about their research speciality in a series of public sessions designed specifically for a lay audience.

“This talk offers a wonderful opportunity to hear from the leading voices in cancer research, right here in Cork and find out about what could change the face of cancer treatment in the years to come. We are excited to have the opportunity to share these developments with the public,” said Orla Dolan, CEO of Breakthrough Cancer Research.

The conference is free to attend, however registration is essential as spaces are limited. For more information and registration visit breakthroughcancerresearch.ie/2019-conference.

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