Please respond to these important questions.
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 patients, caregivers and survivors in Canada.
A recent CCSN-commissioned Leger survey of 1,243 Canadians revealed that the response to the COVID-19 pandemic has led to a crisis in essential cancer care across the country. Cancer patients, their caregivers and those awaiting confirmation of a cancer diagnosis faced and still face postponed and cancelled appointments, tests and treatment, causing heightened fear and anxiety, even as pandemic restrictions are lifted.
Here are a few responses we received in our Leger survey from cancer patients living in Saskatchewan :
“It’s hard enough going to the appointment but having it postponed and waiting makes me a little more anxious hoping that everything is still good”
“I’ve been trying to get an MRI for a year and this just sets it back even more.”
“The greatest fear is probably if it comes back and treatment is not available because of COVID-19”
New survey data from the University of Saskatchewan’s Canadian Hub for Applied and Social Research (CHASR) suggests COVID-19 will be on Saskatchewan voters’ minds when they place their votes.
The survey found that COVID-19 is an important factor to voters. More than 6 in 10 respondents stated that issues related to COVID-19 will be important in determining their vote in the provincial election, and among those who stated COVID issues will be important to their vote choice, 53 per cent mentioned health care as their top issue. – (https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/saskatchewan/analysis-sask-election-survey-covid-19-1.5724801?fbclid=IwAR1XCoO3s_hop2CK1dd_XhxNxWK-WG7Vnw6J38ZF1SjNfwpZNfC74YkiVww)
The government of Saskatchewan has a critical role to play in making sure that essential cancer care is not disrupted by COVID-19.
Cancer can’t be cancelled or postponed. The delay and cancellation of cancer care due to COVID-19 has triggered another public health crisis. Cancer care and diagnosis must continue during any public health crisis affecting Canadians to save lives.
If elected, how will your government provide the explicit inclusion of essential cancer care in a second or third wave of COVID-19 and in all crisis and pandemic planning in the future?
Your response will be circulated to cancer patients, caregivers and survivors in Saskatchewan and included on our website at www.survivornet.ca. Links to your responses will also be posted on Facebook and Twitter.