Next month’s Auckland Meeting

This will be on 3 August, 9.30 to 11.30 at Domain Lodge.

Our speaker is Dr Neil Croucher who will address us via Skype. One of his Oral Health colleagues who works at Greenlane will attend the meeting. Dr Croucher is the overall manager of Oral Health at Greenlane, Middlemore and in Whangarei. Prepare those questions you have been dying to ask about your entitlement to dental care after head and neck cancer treatment.


Not long until WHNCD! Here’s a reminder that we have a stall at North Shore Hospital between 10 am and 2 pm. Some of you have already agreed to attend but everyone is welcome. We have a lot of informational posters and brochures as well as free samples of dental products from Smile Store and Oral 7. There might be free samples of light-up tongue depressors called Throatscopes. I’m not 100% sure of the giveaway status but have been promised that I will get one myself, so you never know.

 Dr David Grayson who has many important roles at the hospital will be there. He is interested in innovation in medicine and in how to engage patients in their own medical care. Because he is also the Clinical Director of ENT, he will be able to give passers-by a free screening if they so desire.

 David is also interested in social media. How can the medical community connect among themselves? How can patients be part of that process? He is arranging a tripod for phones so we can Facebook Live and Periscope at least the opening of the stall.

 WHNCD started in the US and is now observed by over 50 countries in the world. Guess who will be the first country to mark this day? Yes, we are going to read out a statement to greet the world and express our shared desire for more education and better treatment for head and neck cancer.

 Next year we will have a stall at Auckland City Hospital too. This year is just the start of our push for world domination.

 Our team

You might have noticed that our website is looking classier these days. That is because of the work of Olwen Williams from Blenheim. Olwen’s partner, Fred, died last year after being diagnosed with tongue cancer. Olwen found us, eventually joined the committee and and has worked on all our IT material and graphic design. She has made us charts and pamphlets, a banner and business cards. She came up with the stylised tui we use in our logo.

Olwen is retired, in her late 60s and an early adopter of information technology.  Some of you might be old enough to remember the computer programming aptitude test young people were given in the 60s and 70s. This was before computer skills courses and was designed to see if people had the mental skills to work in the new field of programming. Olwen was one of them. She developed an interest in graphic design when websites became the norm and had to be laid out nicely. Right now, we have asked Olwen to design some infographics for us as well as some “inspirational” quotes and poems. I sometimes find these annoying but if we make our own, they can be more believable and realistic.

Here is Olwen’s first quotation graphic made just for us. I think it sums up how a lot of us try to live the best lives we can in the circumstances we find ourselves in.

 More news

Our Chair, Diana, is progressing well after her recent surgery. Stitches out, she is back on her computer networking to raise awareness for Head and Neck Cancer Day.

We have sent 10 patient care packs to Auckland City Hospital to mark the day. These are prototypes only but we hope we gain enough funding to supply them to all new patients.


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