FCIC Survivorship Conference Announced

FCIC Announces Nation's First Conference on Cancer Survivorship

Thursday 26 April 2012

Download Media Release

Australia‟s first scientific and consumer-based survivorship conference will be one of many new initiatives borne from the newly commissioned $30 million Flinders Centre for Innovation in Cancer, incorporating the LIVESTRONG Cancer Research Centre and the ACRF Cancer Prevention Unit, which was launched by Minister for Health John Hill today at noon.

Minister Hill said that the Flinders Centre for Innovation in Cancer initiated conference, to be held in February 2013, will assist with the development of survivorship programs and health strategies throughout South Australia and Australia.

Additionally, the Minister announced today that an Australian version of the LIVESTRONG Guidebook, more than 400,000 of which have been distributed in U.S., will be created by the Flinders Centre for Innovation in Cancer‟s key stakeholders including the FMC Foundation, Flinders University and the Flinders Medical Centre in association with the Lance Armstrong Foundation.

“Both of these new initiatives demonstrate exciting new levels of leadership by South Australia within the international and national cancer community. The translation of the LIVESTRONG Guidebook will include the sharing of ideas for the betterment of patients not only in our two countries but will pave the way for similar collaborations around the world,” Minister Hill said.

Federal Member for Kingston Ms Amanda Rishworth spoke on behalf of the Australian Government, which contributed $10 million to the Centre, by recognising the Flinders Centre for Innovation in Cancer‟s national leadership in cancer prevention research.

“The Centre will see over 100 investigators working hand in glove with health providers to ensure optimum care for cancer patients as well as focussed efforts on new ways to prevent cancer from the development of nutraceuticals to develop highly advance and sensitive yet cost effective tests to detect pre-cancerous changes,” Ms Rishworth highlighted.

Flinders Centre for Innovation in Cancer spokesperson, Professor Graeme Young, said the Centre‟s unique focus on cancer prevention research could lead to the most effective "cure‟ for cancer we will see in the next decade.

“We have world leading researchers looking at nutrition and cancer prevention, and teams focussing specifically on breast, ovarian, prostate, oesophageal, and bowel cancers, amongst others,” Professor Young said.

“We expect to see this Centre driving and inspiring more effective results for those whose lives are, or one day may be, affected by cancer.”

The Flinders Centre for Innovation in Cancer is a joint venture between the Flinders Medical Centre Foundation, the Flinders Medical Centre and Flinders University.

Since launching the fundraising campaign in 2005, the FMC Foundation has driven the on-going lobbying, fundraising and awareness drive that has seen this project develop from a vision to a reality.

“It is simple - when one is aware that almost 50% of all cancers are preventable and knowing that so much more can be done to improve a patient‟s experience and survivorship chances – we were motivated and tireless in the pursuit of funds to complete this great Centre,” said FMC Foundation Chairman Mr Alan Young AM.

Apart from over $4 million raised through the general public donations by the FMC Foundation, the Centre attracted a $10 million grant from the Federal Government; $7.5 million in funds from the State Government as well a range of major pledges from Flinders University; Cancer Council SA, the Australian Cancer Research Foundation; Flinders‟ own clinicians through the FMC Clinician‟s Trust Fund; and the Volunteer Service for FMC Inc.

The four-storey 5000 square metre Centre with its striking façade and modern open planned workspaces and laboratories, has been designed with community consultation to create an uplifting, inspired environment that will features state of the art open plan laboratories; a multi-disciplinary cancer clinic; and completely re-styled and expanded chemotherapy infusion suite; a patient resource space and in the future a wellness centre for complimentary services.

While the cycling champion and cancer survivor Lance Armstrong was not present for the commissioning of the Centre, he beamed in his message to those in attendance.

“I learned about the plans for this world-class facility on my first visit to Adelaide in 2009 and had the pleasure of attending the groundbreaking ceremony just a little more than two years ago,” said Armstrong. “It‟s amazing to see this dream finally realised and it is a major step forward for cancer survivors in Adelaide, across Australia and around the world. I am certain that this facility will live up to its name and prove itself to be a global leader in cancer care, prevention and research.”

Claire Neal, Director of Global Strategies at the Lance Armstrong Foundation, travelled from Austin, Texas to attend the ceremony. “The Lance Armstrong Foundation is looking forward to collaborating with the Flinders Centre for Innovation in Cancer to better understand the needs of survivors in Australia and developing a plan to advance survivorship care across the nation,” said Neal. “We are already hard at work on the creation an Australian version of the LIVESTRONG Guidebook and feel this partnership has enormous promise.”