Social media campaign gives breast cancer patients' carers a voice

Breast cancer patients can now document their journeys and shine a light on those who cared for them, thanks to a new social media campaign by the Cancer Association of SA and Roche Pharma.
Breast cancer patients can now document their journeys and shine a light on those who cared for them, thanks to a new social media campaign by the Cancer Association of SA and Roche Pharma.
Image: 123rf/dolgachov

Being diagnosed with cancer is undoubtedly a gruelling life journey for patients. However, the people who care for cancer patients are often the unsung heroes who play the biggest role in the recovery of patients.

A new social media campaign, #BehindEveryPatient, launched by the Cancer Association of SA (Cansa) and the pharmaceutical company Roche is set to shine the light and celebrate the work that health-care professionals and home-based caregivers do in helping breast cancer patients heal and be whole again.

Launched this week to coincide with October as breast cancer awareness month, the #BehindEveryPatient campaign will share stories of bravery, compassion and dedication from health-care professionals and carers who not only deliver quality treatment and care, but also hope and strength for their patients.

For each unique story shared the pharmaceutical giant will donate R25 to Cansa to aid the work the cancer body does in caring for and supporting cancer patients.

The campaign, which will be run on social media, encourages South Africans to use the #BehindEveryPatient hashtag to say “thank you” or share stories that highlight the critical role health professionals and carers play in the patient’s treatment journey.

“The breast cancer patient journey can be difficult, including health, mental, social and financial hurdles. As Cansa we aim to let patients know they’re not alone,” said Cara Noble, national relationship manager at Cansa.

She commended medical professionals, including doctors, nurses, radiologists, pathologists, social workers and family caregivers, for the care and support they provide for breast cancer patients in the hospital and in the home.

She encouraged South Africans to share their cancer stories using the #BehindEveryPatient hashtag, saying the donations from the pharmaceutical company “will help us do even more for patients”.

Dr Devan Moodley, an oncologist at Wits Donald Gordon Medical Centre, said: “Every day, we see patients who are bravely fighting breast cancer. I know I speak for all my medical colleagues when I say we commend their courage.

“The medical community has been challenged by the Covid-19 pandemic but, in response, we have adapted care and treatment plans so patients can continue to get the best care possible.”

David Gibbons, general manager of Roche Pharma, said by putting a spotlight on the people who walk the breast cancer journey alongside patients, “this campaign is an opportunity to say thank you for their tireless commitment to providing safe, effective breast cancer care, particularly during the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic.”

“We recognise that a strong health workforce is a critical piece of a strong health system. By working hand-in-hand with partners, including health-care professionals, we can reduce the barriers and hurdles patients may encounter in their health journey,” he said.

TimesLIVE


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