I attended the BRA (Breast Reconstruction Awareness) seminar in Halifax, yesterday. It was well done, but the time it was held was horrible, and having to go find parking in Halifax is always fun. It was good to put faces to some of the plastic surgeons in the QEII, but there wasn't enough of something that they seem to trying to improve: communication.
It was a flood-the-room-with-information session. They even had to speed things along so that anyone that was trying to take notes was pressed to write things down and would miss the next sentence trying to scribble down the last topic the surgeon/presenter last said. They also started talking about mastectomy vs lumpectomy and treatment. Newsflash! This is supposed to be about reconstruction not the choice we made about our surgery. That's a different (all be it integrated) topic altogether. We were there to talk about new/repaired breasts, not the options that come with removing the cancer.
One thing they brushed but did not go in detail is the wait times. I wanted to know (and got to ask) what is being done to help decrease the wait times for consultations. Not the surgeries, the consultations. (Aim low but dream big). The answer is they are looking into it, they were having trouble with lack-of-staff... yehyehyeh, but what NOW?
We need to get it out in the public? FINE, tell us that, we'll get it in the public. There's news, papers, radio, billboards, the web - it'll get out there! What next? We need funding? Have you seen what a bunch of determined women can do if they really, really want something? No? Well watch us!!
We want answers, and if you don't have them, we'll go for what you have and go from there. Next pls! This isn't something we need to ask a question and then say "oh, well if that's just the way it is, that's all we can do" about it. Hardly! We're going to find out what's realistic and then go for what we really need. Quiet women are not the ones that are remembered, and we're not going to let the health care system forget about us!