Monday 14 October, 2019

John E Sabga Foundation calls for more attention to pancreatic cancer

Photo courtesy

Photo courtesy

On World Pancreatic Cancer Day on November 15, people around the world will rally together to Demand Better in the fight against pancreatic cancer, starting with awareness of the symptoms and risks.

The annual one-day campaign is an initiative of the World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition consisting of more than 70 organizations from 30 countries on six continents.
The John E Sabga Foundation issued a statement on Wednesday noting that every day, more than 1,250 people worldwide will be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, and an estimated 1,180 will die from the disease.

Pancreatic cancer has the lowest survival rate among all major cancers, and in nearly every country, is the only major cancer with a single digit five-year survival rate (2-9 percent).

The Foundation notes that these chilling figures are not merely statistics as they represent family members, friends and colleagues across the globe.

World Pancreatic Coalition Chair, Julie Fleshman, says she hopes that with proper marketing, awareness of pancreatic cancer symptoms is achieved.

 “The symptoms and risks of pancreatic cancer can be vague and are poorly understood, which is why it’s so important to recognize the warning signs. Initiatives like World Pancreatic Cancer Day allow us to demand better for patients and bring greater attention, awareness and, ultimately, better outcomes, to this deadly disease.”

 Knowing the symptoms and risks remains key to an early diagnosis. There is currently no screening test or early detection method for pancreatic cancer, though research is being conducted in these areas. It is also critical that those who may see signs or symptoms of pancreatic cancer listen to their bodies, seek medical attention and when talking to their healthcare provider, mention pancreatic cancer.

Research shows that patients diagnosed in time for surgery are more likely to live five years and beyond. World Pancreatic Cancer Day chair, Ali Stunt said as an 11-year survivor of pancreatic cancer, he is living proof that knowing the symptoms of pancreatic cancer and listening to your body can save your life.

 “No matter what country you live in or language you speak, you must advocate for your health and take action immediately if you have symptoms that are not normal for you and you think they may be signs of pancreatic cancer.”

This year, the Coalition invites the global community to take action to raise awareness of this deadly disease by:

“Recognising the symptoms. Seventy-one per cent of people will die within the first year. That is just not fair. We have to act quickly. We have to make purple the new pink…We owe it to our loved ones and those battling this disease to wage war on their behalf and knock that pink ribbon to second place on the finish line. Unless you journey with a loved one through this disease…or any cancer for that matter…You have no clue of how horrible this disease is. We must demand better patient care”, Natalie Sabga Founder JESF

• Understanding the symptoms and risks of this disease. Visit for information on pancreatic cancer and shareable graphics

 • Spreading the word and sharing the educational materials to help inform family, friends, co-workers and social media followers about the symptoms and risks and what to do to support earlier diagnosis

• Following the Coalition on social media: Twitter/Instagram: @WorldPancreatic o Facebook: @WorldPancreaticCancerDay

• Temporarily changing your Facebook or Instagram profile picture to support World Pancreatic Cancer Day and using the hashtags #WPCD, #DemandBetter and #PancreaticCancer

• Wearing purple on World Pancreatic Cancer Day (Thursday, Nov 15)

• Lighting buildings, monuments or homes purple

• Asking your public officials to support more government funding of pancreatic cancer research

• On November the 16th JESF and John Thomas productions will host the Gala of Believe the Musical at NAPA 7:00 PM and cocktail reception; $500.00 per ticket; proceeds to JESF continued support of Cancer research and support of patients in Trinidad and Tobago

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