Helping the World Reframe the Breast Cancer Conversation
Oct 01, 2015
Many people hear "breast cancer" and think of inspiring stories of the survivors who beat the disease. This is particularly true during Breast Cancer Awareness Month when pink ribbons, shirts and slogans can be seen everywhere. However, one group of women is often overlooked – those living with metastatic breast cancer, for which there is no cure.
Novartis is committed to supporting the metastatic breast cancer community, not just in October, but year-round. We formed the Count Us, Know, Join Us program with 13 breast cancer patient advocacy organizations to recognize those living with the disease as well as their caregivers, supporters, friends and family. To amplify their voice, we are leading a variety of exciting initiatives. Here are just a few:
Sharing a #CountUs Selfie to Support the Metastatic Community
We’re asking people around the world to take a picture with a frame that says “Picture This: More Support for Advanced Breast Cancer” and share it on their social media channels during October with a message of support for the metastatic community. Patient advocates, celebrities and journalists alike have already shared their selfies and asked others to join them in reframing the breast cancer conversation. You can download and print a frame here and post a selfie on your social media channels to show your support.
Helping Patients around the Globe Make Their Dialogue Count with Doctors
After finding that there are still gaps in treatment dialogue, we spoke to oncologists, patient advocates and other experts across the globe to better understand regional differences and similarities in doctor-patient conversations. What we found was that, in many countries, patients don’t feel empowered to do basic things that most of us take for granted. For example, some patients don’t ask questions because they think it comes across as disrespectful or challenging to their doctor. Others are unaware that they are allowed to bring someone with them to their appointments and to take notes. We culled this global advice into a universal tip card to help patients enhance their time with their doctor.
The tip card is available in English and is currently being translated into other languages, including: Brazilian Portuguese, Cantonese, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin, Portuguese, and Spanish. All tip cards can be found at www.advancedbreastcancercommunity.org.
We continually strive to make the global metastatic breast cancer community feel counted this October and all year round!