Friday Update 11th August 2023

Mez_BCNA Administrator, Staff, Member, Moderator Posts: 920
edited September 2023 in Community news and events

Hello members and welcome to another Friday update,

You will probably notice BCNA activity in my recent posts. We headed to Canberra last week for the ‘National Metastatic Breast Cancer’ data roundtable and we are also busy preparing for the Field of Women event this month. I will share more details below in case you missed it!

Thankyou for your contributions to the proposed new private group Triple Negative Breast Cancer (TNBC)  which is now available to join.

Community Highlights

Popular Forum Discussions 

If you have missed some of the most active discussions last month, you can check them out via the links below:

Posts by 'Category Name' 22 July - 11 August 2023

Featured Private Group - 'Carers Corner'

With so many tailored private groups available through the Online Network, I have decided to 'feature' a group in my Friday Updates for those who are new to the community or haven't explored groups. The Carers Corner group may be suitable for someone diagnosed with breast cancer who is also managing the responsibility of caring for someone in their life; or perhaps you are a partner, parent, child or family member caring for someone with breast cancer. We hope this can be a space for members to share their stories and provide support to each other. 

Community News

BCNA News 03 August 2023 – People living with metastatic breast cancer call to be counted

Not many people know that people living with metastatic breast cancer in Australia are not consistently counted on our cancer registries  CLICK HERE to read more.

BCNA News 05 August 2023 - BCNA alarmed about delays in diagnosis and access to treatment for breast cancer in Queensland
Breast Cancer Network Australia (BCNA) is alarmed people in Queensland are waiting months for test results to confirm breast cancer and then delays for treatment after a diagnosis CLICK HERE  to read more and watch

BCNA Remembers Harry Brooks

It is with a heavy heart that we share Breast Cancer Network Australia (BCNA) member and passionate advocate, Harry Brooks has died from metastatic breast cancer in June.

Harry was a person with enormous character and determination, demonstrated through his commitment and ability to raise awareness and greater understanding in the community of males living with breast cancer.

Over the years, Harry has been involved in many projects with BCNA including attending the first Blokes with breast cancer Zoom call in 2020. Harry was often asked to be the keynote speaker at community events, leaving a lasting impression on all in attendance. He was a proud member of the 2023 Consumer working group for the upcoming Field of Women as well as speaking regularly to BCNA staff. Those regular calls and emails with staff, who were privileged enough to work with him, are already missed.

'My goal is to educate others in order to reduce stigmatisation, judgement, and negativity so all men with breast cancer feel supported.' – Harry.

Thank you, Harry, for all you have done to give male breast cancer a voice. Your work will continue now and into the future.

Harry is survived by his beautiful wife, Yvonne, their two proud daughters, sons-in-law, and grandchildren.

Making Metastatic Breast Cancer Count

We are excited to share with you an update on our National Metastatic Breast Cancer data roundtable that was held last week in Canberra.

The roundtable was a key recommendation of our inaugural issues paperMaking Metastatic Breast Cancer Count, launched in October of last year. After several months of careful planning and extensive engagement with the sector, we successfully held a national roundtable bringing together over 35 experts across cancer registries, cancer epidemiology, policy, research, and several peak clinical groups.

Head to the recent Online Network discussion to read further Making Metastatic Breast Cancer Count - Parliamentary Friends of Women's Health panel discussion

BCNA Forums/Webcasts

Coffs Harbour Information Forum

BCNA is hosting an Information Forum in Coffs Harbour on the 7th of September 2023 for everyone affected by breast cancer, including their supporters, covering a range of vital topics CLICK HERE to register (Note: If you are unable to attend in person, you can still join us virtually. When registering, select ‘Information Forum – Attending Virtually’. The virtual session will be delivered via Zoom, and you will receive the access link one day before the event).

Field of Women – 20th August 2023

In 2005 Breast Cancer Network Australia (BCNA) brought the Field of Women to life on the biggest stage as a visual representation of the statistics behind breast cancer at Melbourne's iconic MCG. It was ground-breaking as the first event of it's kind, aligning a cause that affects so many, with a sport that so many are mad about. 

This year's Field of Women will be held on Sunday 20 August. Buy your tickets or read more about our ground-breaking work over the past 25years via the link Field of Women 2023 tickets now available!

You can also read our recent Online Network discussion Field of Women - Sunday 20th August 2023

Books/Movies/TV Series/Documentaries

This week I thought you may like to watch Consumer Representative Lisa Tobin’s presentation The role of BCNA Consumer Representatives- Lisa Tobin - YouTube
If you would like to know more about how you can get involved with BCNA CLICK HERE

That’s all for today’s update. Please take care and if you have any questions or feedback please messaged of our Online Network moderators below:

@Jenny_BCNA @Pat_BCNA @Mez_BCNA @Risha_BCNA @Denise_BCNA

If you wish to speak with the Helpline team regarding your concern, please call 1800 500 258 Mon-Fri 9:00am - 5:00pm (AEST), alternatively you can email 
The mod team - Mez, Jenny, Pat, Denise and Risha

"We are only as strong as we are united, as weak as we are divided”


  • arpie
    arpie Member Posts: 7,736
    edited August 2023
    I am so sorry to hear of the passing of Harry Brooks - condolences to his family and friends.  I had shared at least 2 of his newspaper articles on my own FB page, to alert buddies to the fact that men can get Breast Cancer too  :( 

    His story can be read here:

    Vale Harry 
  • Kristen
    Kristen Member Posts: 118
    I read a book recently thatcame out in July this year, that others may also find interesting called Under The Knife .
    It  was  shocking to read  how hard it is for doctors to gain their qualifications in the UK , and this women chose to become a breast surgeon, then had to deal with her own breast cancer diagnosis.
    Mental health stuggles are honestly revealed and overall the book  makes for a compasionate read and an interesting and unique breast cancer biography.
    It did make me wonder if obtaining medical qualifications are just as harsh in Australia now a days, because it was cruel and horrible in the UK when she did her training. Certianly needs reform to humaise the process. Doctors are such a  precious resource and this story  helps us to be a more compassionate patients. Also reading of her dealing with post surgery issues made me think they must not have a BCNA type organisation over there to inform of importance of rehab ,physios and solutions to deal with side effects of surgery/chemo etc.Maybe why that now she has had to retire early ,but with all her knowledge and experience, she is  sharing breast cancer  information on her socials from her unique perspective.
    Currently she has paused making content due to another reoccurance, but lots of reels and her page if your looking for videos to browse.
    Her tag is


    Under the Knife: Life Lessons from the Operating Theatre 

    by Liz O'Riordan (Author) 

    Under the Knife  is her second book . I bought it on amazon, kindle version, and i don't have a kindle, but you can read it online or on phone using their free kindle app. (First time i have done this-finally , its so handy to get books this way that the libarary doesn't have)

    Her first book was

    The Complete Guide to Breast Cancer: How to Feel Empowered and Take Control

    by Trisha Greenhalgh and Liz O’Riordan  20 September 2018

    Pink wishes

  • Margoes
    Margoes Member Posts: 2
    edited August 2023
    Thanks for the recommendation