Improving pancreatic cancer outcomes with rapid access to care

Rapid access clinic at BC Cancer could help reduce time between diagnosis and start of treatment

When David Kennedy was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, his first thought was “let’s get this taken care of as soon as possible.”

For people like David facing pancreatic cancer, time is precious. Although it is the 10th most common cancer in Canada, it is the fourth leading cause of cancer-related deaths after lung, breast in women, colorectal and prostate in men.

Pancreatic cancer is difficult to detect at an early stage and is often resistant to treatment. It’s projected that for the more than 800 people in British Columbia who will be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer this year, only 10 per cent (or 80 people) will live five years.

“While our teams at BC Cancer have made significant progress in breaking down pancreatic cancer in labs and clinics, for some patients this isn’t happening fast enough,” says Dr. Daniel Renouf, BC Cancer medical oncologist and clinician-scientist.

Patients often need to be seen by several specialists and there can be significant delays in arranging these appointments and subsequent tests. During this time, the cancer can progress.

To help reduce the time elapsed between diagnosis and the start of treatment, Dr. Renouf and his team have a vision to create a rapid access clinic at BC Cancer, where:

  • specialist consults are consolidated on a single day;
  • testing is expedited;
  • cutting-edge genetic profiling is performed at the time of diagnosis, leading to tailored therapies for each individual patient; and
  • the clinical research team can discuss potential experimental treatment options.

The rapid access clinic will also significantly minimize stress for patients and families, according to Dr. Renouf.

“By relieving some of their greatest anxieties, we can help patients cope better,” he says. “And by managing their care more efficiently, we can help give them their best chance for survival.”

The significance of creating a rapid access clinic for pancreatic cancer care is not lost on David.

“My prognosis improved because I had swift access to the appropriate treatment,” he says. “I owe my life to all the doctors and staff that cared for me – I am one lucky man.”

Your support can help make the future of pancreatic cancer care a reality and bring new hope to families across B.C. so they can experience an outcome much like David’s. Learn more at www.bccancerfoundation.com.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Nuxalk College undertakes language digitization project

New tapes from over 50 years ago are set to be digitally transcribed

Bella Coola under another winter storm warning

Freezing rain is expected by this afternoon

‘Scariest boat ride of my life’: Passengers trapped by ice on rocky Nimpkish ferry sailing

The ferry docked in Bella Coola on Jan.12 coated in a thick layer of ice

Heiltsuk Nation calls probe into arrest of Indigenous man at bank ‘woefully inadequate’

Maxwell Johnson and his 12-year-old granddaughter had been at a Bank of Montreal branch in Vancouver on Dec. 20

Mission Hill cellarman fired after mistakenly dumping $162K of wine down the drain

The former employee filed a grievance with the West Kelowna winery but was unsuccesful

B.C. player becomes only second Canadian to enter Hall of Fame of Baseball

Walker received 76.6 percent of the Baseball Writers of America Association vote

Ulktacho, Lhoosk’uz Dené sign agreements in support of Blackwater Mine project

Agreements commit to share portion of provincial mineral tax revenue collected from planned mine

Boy, 13, arrested after alleged assault involving girl at B.C. middle school

Boy alleged to have used ‘inappropriate levels of force’ to injure the girl

Protesters block entrance to Victoria government building to support Wet’suwet’en First Nation

A letter with four demands was delivered to the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources

Hospital patient pleads guilty to dumbbell assault of nurse in Abbotsford

Neale Heath admits to assault causing bodily harm in attack last September

‘Epic sky palace’: B.C. businesses help create dream treehouse for boy recovering from cancer

‘It was kind of a bright shining beacon at the end of a horrible, dark tunnel’

VIDEO: Nickelback gears up for nostalgia tour

Canadian band joins Stone Temple Pilots for a summer tour that includes just one stop in Canada

Most Read