Health Minister, Roger Cook with current Crawford Lodge Guest, Brad Kneebone.
The Minister for Health, Roger Cook, has formally announced a $1.6 million expansion of ourground breaking Find Cancer Early program to drive early detection of cancer, reduce healthcare costs and ultimately save more lives of regional West Australians.
The announcement was made while the Minister was opening extensions at our Crawford Lodge in Nedlands for country cancer patients.
Our CEO Ashley Reid said Find Cancer Early was a successful awareness campaign developed as part of a research initiative by Cancer Council WA and the University of Western Australia to address the poorer outcomes regional cancer patients faced.
Results from the campaign, first launched in 2011, showed a significant increase in public awareness of the signs and symptoms of cancer.
"People living in regional areas of WA are more likely to die within five years of a cancer diagnosis than people in metro areas, so we are looking forward to expanding this campaign to reach more West Australians with these potentially life-saving messages about early detection and diagnosis of cancer," Mr Reid said.
"Your survival prospects following a cancer diagnosis should not be determined by your postcode.
"Find Cancer Early is all about addressing the disparity that exists between outcomes of regional and metropolitan cancer patients," Mr Reid said.
"We know the campaign increased knowledge of the signs and symptoms of cancer so we welcome the Minister's announcement today to help to improve the cancer outcomes for regional West Australians."
Brad Kneebone from Lowlands, near Albany, is currently staying at Crawford Lodge while undergoing treatment for prostate cancer.
Mr Kneebone said he believed the expanded Find Cancer Early program will make a big difference.
"It's definitely needed because there's a reluctance by country people to go to their GP, maybe that's because they're more stoic and tend to live with illness or discomfort for longer.
"It's particularly relevant if you're running a farm and you know that you're needed there every day - it can be difficult to present yourself for treatment," he said.
The four year funded campaign would specifically target hard-to-reach audiences and remote Aboriginal communities.
TV, radio and online ads will be run across regional WA as part of this campaign along with community intervention work by our Regional Education Officers in seven regions across WA.