Geelong residents affected by cancer urged to call Helpline

Wednesday 10 October, 2007

The Cancer Council Victoria is encouraging Greater Geelong residents who are concerned about cancer to call The Cancer Council Helpline on 13 11 20.

Latest Cancer Council statistics show almost 1000 Greater Geelong residents are diagnosed each year, with bowel, prostate and breast cancer representing more than 40% of these new cases.

The Cancer Council Helpline is a free and confidential service where people can talk with a cancer nurse regarding their concerns about cancer. Callers can also receive cancer information and be put in touch with local support services.

Dr Amanda Hordern, Deputy Director of the Cancer Information and Support Service at the Cancer Council said the Cancer Council Helpline provided an opportunity for people living in regional Victoria to talk to a qualified cancer nurses in their own time.

"We are encouraging people to call and speak with our cancer nurses, particularly those in rural and regional areas as they may not have access to doctors and other health professionals in their home town," Dr Hordern said.

"Receiving a cancer diagnosis is an overwhelming experience and many people find it a very confusing and difficult time. Our cancer nurses are here to listen and provide information and support when it is needed most.

"We don't provide individual medical advice; we provide accurate information to help callers make an informed choice and always refer callers back to their treating doctor for further discussion.

"We can also link people up to support services in their area or with Cancer Connect volunteers who have been through a similar experience," Dr Hordern said.

Dr Hordern said the Cancer Council Helpline provides an opportunity to get information and support from the privacy of their own homes.

"The Cancer Council Helpline gives people the opportunity to ask anything they like and while remaining completely anonymous and confidential."

The Cancer Council Victoria's Cancer Council Helpline advertising campaign is now running on print and radio in regional Victoria for four weeks.