BCNA is pleased to be participating in the patient advocacy program of the Third International Consensus Conference for Advanced Breast Cancer (ABC) in Portugal in November. The ABC Consensus Conferences have the ambitious goal of improving outcomes for all people with advanced (secondary) breast cancer, no matter where they live in the world.
They aim to develop internationally agreed guidelines for the management of advanced breast cancer. The guidelines are based on the most up-to-date evidence available and can be used to guide treatment decision-making across the world, noting that some adaptations may be required due to different access to health care in different countries. The last ABC Consensus Conference in 2013 brought together more than 1,000 participants from 71 countries, including health professionals, consumer advocates and journalists. Former BCNA CEO Maxine Morand participated in the Patient Advocacy Committee of the conference that year.
Danielle Spence, Senior Policy Adviser – Secondary Breast Cancer Strategy, is representing BCNA on this year’s Patient Advocacy Committee. It is the strong belief of the committee that health professionals, working closely with consumer advocates and with strong support from media, can raise awareness about the needs and challenges faced by people living with secondary breast cancer.
This year’s consumer advocacy program will focus on the needs of young women and the importance of patient reported quality of life outcomes in assessing effectiveness of treatment. There will also be a focus on the differences between how women assess side effects of their treatment compared with how health professionals assess them.
We will provide you with an update of the conference in the March 2016 edition of The Inside Story and on our website www.bcna.org.au.