Member of the Legislative Council Natasha Maclaren-Jones today encouraged the NSW community to support Pink Ribbon Day on Monday 26 October and take the time to find out what they need to know about breast cancer awareness.
Pink Ribbon Day (held annually in October) is a breast cancer awareness and fundraising initiative of the Cancer Council, which helps raise funds in support of Australian women affected by breast and gynaecological cancers.
Mrs Maclaren-Jones said breast cancer continued to be the leading cause of cancer in women in NSW and was the second leading cause of cancer death among NSW women, after lung cancer.
“While the incidence of breast cancer is increasing, thankfully, mortality is decreasing,” Mrs Maclaren-Jones said.
“Prevention is our best chance at reducing that number further, so it is important members of our community know what they can do to minimise their risk of developing breast cancer.”
Key steps women can take to reduce their risk of developing breast cancer include:
- making healthy life choices to reduce risks over which they have some control;
- for women in the target age range of 50 to 74 years, attending BreastScreen NSW clinics to have a free mammogram every two years;
- and seeking medical advice without delay if they notice a breast change that is unusual.
The BreastScreen NSW program, coordinated through the Cancer Institute NSW, funds local health districts in NSW to provide free client-centred screening and assessment services, managed by a team of skilled professionals.
The Program aims to provide access to target age women close to where they live through a combination of more than 200 fixed and mobile screening venues across NSW.
“In 2014-2015, more than 300,000 women were screened through the NSW program and we are encouraging more women to take up this service,” Mrs Maclaren-Jones said.
Pink Ribbon Day events are held during Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which provides an opportunity to focus on breast cancer and its impact on those affected by the disease in the community.