Dr Katharine Hodgkinson attended the Breast Cancer Innovations Against the Vines in the Hunter from 19-21st September 2019 with 90 nurses and health professionals from around NSW and Australia. It was a great opportunity to come together to learn and share knowledge about how best to care for patients and families with the conference providing updates on nursing, medical and psychological aspects of care. Presentations covered the latest research on role of immunotherapy in breast cancer, education to demystify the pathology report, a review of the role of radiotherapy in the modern era, and practical guidance on managing a range of treatment side effects. A discussion of fertility choices (and costs unfortunately) for young women provided options for increasing hope for many younger patients who wish to have a family or complete their family after treatment, with a clear message that all health care professionals can instigate conversations with patients about this important area of their lives.
A big thank you to the dedicated volunteers of the NSW Breast Cancer Interest Group and the Hunter Nurse Education Group for the opportunity to learn so much at this conference and share expertise to improve the experiences of those dealing with breast cancer.
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Photo: Gillian Blancard NP CMN presenting the evidence “to polish or not to polish” during chemotherapy