Cancer Care: Have We Lost The Magic?


Modern cancer treatment is now improving at a rapid and ever-growing pace with new therapies greatly changing the outlook for many people diagnosed with cancer. But the numbers of people affected are also increasing. These two developments put pressure on our hospitals and cancer centres to be efficient and make it harder for our humanity and compassion to show itself. We run the risk of creating production line cancer care, where cancer patients feel they are numbers going through the system. No matter how good cancer treatment gets, there will always be the terrible moment of receiving a diagnosis and knowing your life has changed.  In reaction to this, a grass-roots cancer drop-in centre was started in Perth, within a major teaching hospital and providing access to a range of treatments largely ignored by modern medicine: yoga, acupuncture, massage, counselling, music therapy, and reiki are some examples. This talk tells the story of this centre, which has become the Solaris Foundation, and an inspiration for many people and for similar centres around the country.

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