SA woman creates first patient-led cancer platform

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  • Living with Cancer is the first patient-led cancer registry platform to provide support and information to those with cancer in SA. 
  • The organisation makes sure that those living with cancer have access to all the necessary information. 
  • And thanks to technology, the outlook for rare cancer cases no longer seems so bleak.

Breast, cervical, endometrial and skin cancers are among the most common cancers affecting women. The latest Globocan 2020 report indicates over 108 000 new diagnoses in South Africa, with more than 57 000 being women.

But what do you do when you find out you're living with rare cancer and you have very little to no information about your condition?

After being diagnosed with rare cancer, Living with Cancer founder Belinda Wagner created the first patient-led cancer registry platform to provide support and information to those with cancer. 

'Not necessarily a death sentence'

Wagner's registry system offers a sense of community that leaves no one behind, making sure that those living with cancer have access to all the necessary information they may require along the way. 

"We give people hope and share resources that help them see that cancer is not necessarily a death sentence."

"People who are impacted by cancer need a platform where they can share their experiences, support each other, gain courage and inspire hope, she explains.

With the help of global tech corporations, Wagner aims to deliver the best digital experience for each cancer journey. 

"By leveraging the right technology solution, we can support and empower people living with different types and stages of cancer and provide much-needed insights and information about cancer that can potentially transform the nature of care in South Africa," Wagner explains. 

Transforming cancer care 

Currently, the South African government, oncology, medical and pharmaceutical industries don't have an updated database of cancer patients. With this in mind, Wagner has launched the 2022 #CountMeIn campaign aiming to register one million people living with cancer in South Africa registered on the patient-led cancer registry.  

Wagner aims to provide insight into budgets, planning, and resources required around oncology treatment, medication, and protocols from this data. 

"It is vital for all kinds of patients to register, be counted and provide information that healthcare professionals and decision-makers can utilise to drive change and ultimately transform cancer care in South Africa," Wagner says.  

Thanks to technology, the outlook for rare cancer cases no longer seems so bleak. 

"We can then also focus on future technological enhancements where we can impact the community in a far greater manner by making information freely available", she says. 

To become part of the journey and #CountMeIn, visit and register on www.livingwithcancersa.co.za.

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