The Auckland campaign for World Head and Neck Cancer Day will include free screening of the head and neck on 26 and 27 July. So far we are not aware of screening in other New Zealand centres.
Auckland Head and Neck Specialists, who operate at Mercy Ascot Hospital, are providing two screening sessions on the day before WHNCD. This will be on 26 July. The free screenings will be at their Takapuna and NorthCare branches on Wednesday 26th July. You can ring them at 09 6302920, email at firstname.lastname@example.org or see their website, www.ahns.co.nz.
Feel free to drop by at any time within that time frame.
A new tool to make screening the mouth easier, the Throatscope is a tongue depressor that lights up. Early arrivers might be able to take one home to use themselves. (We might have free samples.)
Like most cancers, head and neck cancer is eminently curable if caught early. Sometimes its first signs are found in the mouth and sometimes a lump in the neck is the first indication.
Next year we hope to have a co-ordinated campaign throughout the country but this year, only our second since we established the network, we will have to limit our endeavours to Auckland. We hope the awareness of the disease that we raise will benefit people throughout New Zealand and beyond.
Meanwhile, our network is fundraising. We want to raise enough money to cover our monthly website and stationery costs as well as for patient care packs for new head and neck cancer patients at multidisciplinary meetings or hospitals throughout the country.
We have all suffered directly or indirectly from head and neck cancer and know how significant a helping hand and contact is when the treatment starts. You can open the link below to donate to our Givealittle account. Don't be shy. Every dollar counts.
In other news, I hope you have seen the stories our members have contributed over the last few weeks. Shane (Bay of Plenty) wrote about his experience with baso-squamous cell carcinoma and Cosette (Christchurch) about her chemo-radiation for throat cancer. Andrew (Whangarei) wrote about the HPV virus and the need for vaccination, while Kathryn (Whangarei) wrote about being a caregiver.
These are all compelling stories and well worth the read. You will see them all right here on the website. Feel free to comment.