“Looking to the future, we envision a day when Canadians can celebrate a cure for Metastatic Breast Cancer”
MBC Canada was formed in response to the lack of resources available specifically to Canadians with MBC. Founded by patients — although they define themselves as so much more! They endeavour to provide their MBC Canadian Community with up-to-date information and resources available.
MBC Canada is wholly run by volunteers, there are no salaried employees. Their administrative operating costs are minimal, programs and events are budgeted individually. Their supporters are invited to contribute to our efforts through a gift of a donation.
As Canadians with MBC, they found that most of the information we accessed, conferences they attended, and research they followed was ALL US-based. Their Canada-specific needs were not being met.
A recent study shows that that on average, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved drugs six months earlier than for the European Union’s European Medicines Agency, and 7.6 months earlier than Health Canada** Once approved in Canada, the process of provincial approval takes even longer — in some cases US patients have access to therapies YEARS before Canadians. As a result, Canadians with MBC seeking information about their disease face a confusing disparity between what is available to them and what other North American patients are experiencing.
In a country as large as Canada, the rise of social media has become an important resource for patients seeking answers and to connect. Faced with a diagnosis of MBC, many can’t voice concerns with family and friends. Sites like Facebook and various blogs are often the only place to gather first-hand information, ask for advice or even vent. MBC Canada rose from such a group in recognition of the unmet needs of the Canadian MBC community.
Metastatic Breast Cancer Canada Top 10 Priorities
- What biomarkers or intrinsic features of the tumour can be used to identify response to specific treatments and dosing schedules?
- What is the role of immunotherapy for metastatic breast cancer?
- How can treatment resistance be delayed, and minimized?
- What causes (i.e. cellular, genomic changes) breast cancer cells to metastasize, and what changes allow them to penetrate the blood-brain barrier?
- What is the right sequence of therapy in metastatic breast cancer?
- Does local therapy (radiation or surgery to sites of metastatic disease) improve survival outcomes in metastatic breast cancer?
- Is continuous treatment with systemic therapy (including HER2-targeted therapy and chemotherapy) better than intermittent treatment?
- Does early palliative care improve outcomes for metastatic breast cancer patients?
- What are the best methods of education for patients around treatment options and decision making that can lead to improved patient outcomes?
- Can safer, more accurate methods, including blood tests of detecting spread of disease (including following curative intent treatment) be developed?