This World Cancer Day, Cancer Council SA is calling on the next state government to invest in a cancer free future by supporting three key election priorities ahead of the March State Election.
Every day, there are 31 new cases of cancer diagnosed in South Australia. Cancer remains the leading cause of death in South Australia, with one in three men and one in four women receiving a diagnosis before the age of 75.
Ahead of the March State Election, Cancer Council SA is calling on the next state government to invest in three key election priorities to help reduce the burden of cancer for all South Australians:
- Invest $2 million into local cancer research every year for the next three years through the Cancer Council Beat Cancer Project;
- Increase the Patient Transport Assistance Scheme (PATS) rebate for regional and remote South Australians to $100 for an individual and $115 for a couple per night; and
- Contribute $400,000 over four years to fund a Tackling Tobacco Pilot Program in South Australia to help reduce the smoking rate in at-risk communities.
Cancer Council SA Chief Executive Kerry Rowlands said that all three asks are targeted, backed by evidence and cost-effective.
“Cancer is one of the leading causes of death and disease in South Australia, with more than 11,400 people losing their life every year.”
“It’s a sobering statistic, but one that highlights why it’s vital for the next State Government to invest in programs and services that reduce the burden of cancer for all South Australians today, and for generations to come,” she said.
With today marking World Cancer Day, Ms Rowlands urged the next State Government to commit to policies which will help the thousands of families impacted by a cancer diagnosis every year.
“Our vision at Cancer Council SA is a cancer free future. This World Cancer Day, we’re calling on the next State Government to make a commitment to tangible policies that will help us make that future a reality.”
Cancer Council SA’s three election priorities:
Invest $2 million into local cancer research every year for the next three years through the Cancer Council Beat Cancer Project.
Since 2011, SA Health and Cancer Council SA has come together to the invest more than $35 million dollars in cancer research through the Cancer Council Beat Cancer Project. This collaborative funding arrangement has the support of the three major South Australian Universities, SAHMRI, SA Health and Cancer Council SA and is one of a kind in Australia. Without this support, the Beat Cancer Project will not be able to fund research at the current levels, meaning talented, local cancer researchers will miss out of the vital funding needed to continue their groundbreaking work. The cancer research funded by the Beat Cancer Project has direct benefits for South Australians living with a cancer diagnosis by prioritising funding for grassroots research.
Increase the Patient Transport Assistance Scheme (PATS) rebate for regional and remote South Australians to $100 for an individual and $115 for a couple per night.
In South Australia, the Patient Assistance Transport Scheme (PATS) is available to patients who travel more than 100 kilometres each way to access essential medical specialist services that are not available locally. The current scheme offers daily subsidies of $40 for single patients and $80 for couples. Cancer Council SA, together with other charities and organisations, is calling on a PATS increase to $100 for singles and $115 for couples to help ease the financial burden on regional and remote South Australians who travel to the city for medical treatment.
Contribute $400,000 over four years to fund a Tackling Tobacco Pilot Program in South Australia to help reduce the smoking rate in at-risk communities.
In 2020, more than 13 per cent of South Australians identified as tobacco smokers, with almost one sixth of those from the state’s most disadvantaged communities. The program gives health professionals the tools to help their clients quit smoking for good, ensuring smoking support is a regular part of the care offered by service providers. Through Tackling Tobacco, services are encouraged to prioritise anti-smoking messaging, are supported in building and actioning smoking policies, training staff, speaking to clients about quitting tobacco and monitoring the project’s efficiency.
To read more about Cancer Council SA’s Election Priorities download our 2022 Election Document here.
Interviews with Kerry Rowlands and case studies can also be arranged on request by contacting Natasha Baugh on 0400 855 244 or sending an email.