Lifestyle

Cancer patients need better regional health services

THE deaths of 640 bowel and breast cancer patients over a decade could have been avoided if there were no inequalities in cancer survival across regional Queensland, a new study has found.

The research has highlighted the need for policies and programs to improve health outcomes in regional areas.

Cancer Council Queensland chief Jeff Dunn said the study, published in the journal Health & Place, explored survival inequalities within five years of diagnosis across 478 regions in Queensland, based on earlier findings in CCQ's first atlas of cancer in Queensland.

"This is landmark work that highlights the importance of routine and timely access to health services for regional Queenslanders," he said. 

"There are a range of personal and broader external factors that influence the health behaviours of regional Queenslanders - this research demonstrates the vital need for regional people to seek out medical advice when they need it and without delay."

The Cancer Council Queensland and Queensland University of Technology analysed Queensland Cancer Registry data, looking at the impact of age, cancer stage at diagnosis, distance from treatment facilities and socioeconomic status on the survival of breast and bowel cancer patients in Queensland.

This found 8 % of the 6019 bowel cancer deaths (470 people) and 7 % of the 2412 women who died of breast cancer (170 people) in the 10 years to 2007 could have been avoided if there were no inequalities in cancer survival across geographical areas throughout Queensland.

"We tried to drill down and understand what was causing these inequalities," Professor Dunn said.

"Previous Cancer Council research has shown that breast and bowel cancer patients have significantly poorer survival in rural or disadvantaged areas, when compared to the Queensland average.

"If the impact of late diagnosis and socioeconomic disadvantage were removed there would be no geographical inequalities in breast cancer survival throughout Queensland.

"Women in more remote areas of Queensland were more likely to be diagnosed with advanced breast cancer and live in socioeconomically disadvantaged areas, and our study shows this is why these women experience lower survival rates.

"Research like this enables us to do more to address the disparities, and ensure greater quality of life and survival rates for people living with cancer."

The study found inequalities in bowel cancer survival decreased only moderately after adjusting for gender, age, cancer stage at diagnosis, area disadvantage and distance to treatment, suggesting other unknown reasons were important causes of geographical inequalities in survival throughout the state.

Topics:  bowel cancer, breast cancer, cancer, cancer council queensland, health services, regional areas



Transport not so splendid

Festival goers wait in line for a bus home after attending the Splendour in the Grass music festival.

Festival goers vent anger.

RACQ says good riddance to Wicked rubbish

TOO MUCH: A Wicked Van spotted in Byron Main Beach car park.

RACQ welcome State Government action on offensive Wicked Campers

Splendour in the Grass’ inspiration and heart

Szymon Borzestowski’s album Tigersapp was honoured at Splendour in the Grass

Splendour's emotional tribute.

Latest deals and offers

Pokemon Go: "Trading" on the horizon as game evolves

No Caption

Pokemon GO players will soon be able to trade with other trainers

Bindi Irwin: ‘I’ve lived 10 lives in one lifetime’

Bindi meets her fans.

SHE'S just turns 18 but Bindi's life has been full of experiences

Transport not so splendid

Festival goers wait in line for a bus home after attending the Splendour in the Grass music festival.

Festival goers vent anger.

Rockhampton cook through to MasterChef semi-final

FAMILY:MasterChef semi-finalist Harry Foster pictured with his mum Ria McClelland.

Harry Foster through to MasterChef semi-finals.

Pop icon and former Neighbours star buys into Byron

Singer Natalie Imbruglia. Supplied by Sony Music Australia.

Former actor turned pop singer joins Byron celebrity rush.

MASTERCHEF: Coast cooks to dominate finals

SO CLOSE: MasterChef's final four, from left, Matt Sinclair, Elise Franciskovic, Harry Foster and Elena Duggan. Elise’s elimination means now only the three Sunshine Coast contestants remain in the competition.

MasterChef finals will be mandatory viewing in three Coast homes

You can own this Queensland town for just $1

Yelarbon

Unprecedented auction of town's business centre with no reserve

Work starts on $15M Caloundra apartment building

Turning the first sod at the Aqua View Apartments site in Kings Beach are (from left) husband-and-wife developers Alex Yuan and Stella Sun with construction company Tomkins director Mike Tomkins and Councillor Tim Dwyer.

Developers excited about addition to Kings Beach skyline

Plans revealed for 1500-lot 'master-planned community'

Precinct will be bounded by Boundary St and Shoesmith Rd

Ecco Ripley sales run sparks prime release

MOVING IN: Sekisui House has announced the release of more residential blocks at Ecco Ripley.

Sekisui House is preparing to unveil more land at Ecco Ripley

Massive residential 9-storey high-rise hit by delays

An artist’s impression of the eight-storey-high apartment complex that Bernoth Holdings wants to build in South Toowoomba, next to the City Golf Club.

Developer struggles to get approved high-rise development started