This morning, Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson proclaimed National Cancer Survivors Day in recognition of the nearly one million cancer survivors living in Canada today. This annual celebration of life took place at City Hall in the presence of representatives of the Canadian Cancer Survivor Network and Prostate Cancer Canada Network Ottawa.
On National Cancer Survivors Day and the days following, thousands of cancer survivors and their families and supporters gather across the globe to honour cancer survivors and to show the world that life after a cancer diagnosis can be fruitful, rewarding and even inspiring. It is also a time to draw attention to the ongoing challenges of cancer survivorship in order to promote more resources, research, and survivor-friendly legislation to improve cancer survivors’ quality of life.
Mayor Watson stated that “a cancer survivor is defined as anyone living with a history of cancer – from the moment of diagnosis through the remainder of their life; there are nearly one million cancer survivors living in Canada today.”
While early diagnosis and improvements in treatment have resulted in cancer patients living longer, much remains to be done to ameliorate the physical, emotional, and financial effects of cancer on survivors as well as including cancer survivors in decision-making on issues which affect them within Canada’s cancer care and healthcare system.
The Canadian Cancer Survivor Network (CCSN) works to connect patients, survivors and other stakeholder groups with decision makers and the wider community to engage in discussion and to act on evidence-based best practices to alleviate the medical, emotional, financial and social costs of cancer and encourage research on ways to overcome barriers to optimal cancer care and follow-up for survivors in Canada.
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