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CMF awarded Upper Canada Medal

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For Immediate Release: February 2, 2017 The Canadian Mesothelioma Foundation receives Upper Canada Medal from Toronto General & Western Hospital Foundation The Canadian Mesothelioma Foundation (CMF) is honoured to receive the Upper Canada Medal from Toronto General & Western Hospital Foundation (TG&WHF) and the Toronto Mesothelioma Program at University Health Network (UHN). The Upper Canada Medal, originally created by the Loyal and Patriotic Society of Upper Canada, recognized the service of volunteer soldiers in the War of 1812. Recognizing an even greater need, the Society decided in 1829 to reduce the medals to gold bullion to pay for building the original Toronto General Hospital. Today, TG&WHF honours special donors by awarding these medals in recognition of distinguished philanthropic support. The award is being presented by Dr. Marc de Perrot, Head of the Toronto Mesothelioma Program, to Dr. Eudice Goldberg, Chair of the CMF and other members of the CMF Board in recognition of their ongoing generous support of the Program through annual grants. “All of us in the Toronto Mesothelioma Program are grateful to the CMF for its generous support.” says Dr. de Perrot. “For nearly ten years, the CMF has been a committed partner in our educational mandate. By enabling us to train the next generation of leaders in mesothelioma care and research, the CMF is helping patients across Canada access effective treatment, while also inspiring discoveries that improve health outcomes for people living with mesothelioma.” “The CMF is honoured to accept this award. We know how important it is to support the work of Dr. de Perrot and others in the Toronto Mesothelioma Program” says Dr. Goldberg.

An Open Letter To the Members of Parliament of Canada

An Open Letter To the Members of Parliament of Canada Thank you for the opportunity to connect with you today. My name is David Hill, I am 55 years, a husband and father of three, and I live in a small town in Alberta - but only for the next 2 to 5 years, according to my doctor. I have a rare, terminal cancer called Mesothelioma that has only one cause, and that is contact with the mineral Asbestos. The link between asbestos contact and fatal illness has been apparent since 200 AD when Roman overseers noticed that their slaves working in mineral mines were dying. The first documented death from contact with asbestos occurred in 1906. The medical community demonstrated a conclusive link between working in close proximity to asbestos and terminal organ cancers in 1924. In 1930, the disease was linked with abdominal and respiratory disease, and in 1941 that disease became known as mesothelioma. Since that time over countless people, including 100,000 Americans working in the ship building and maintenance industry alone have died far ahead of their time. In Canada, we seem not to have kept track of our own body count; our government accountants and policy wonks chose economic gain over human life and continued to refute the cancer danger well into the 1950’s. The only time I have been in contact with asbestos in my life was during my service with the Royal Canadian Navy Reserve when I was a university student. You don’t need to be a miner or an industrial worker to get this disease; all you need is a single, microscopic encounter to fatally poison you. I was a navigating officer trainee posted to naval ships that were constructed between 1944 and 1952. They were packed with asbestos, the wonder material Canada was promoting in that era.

Union leader calls for asbestos registry, G&M

Click on link Mark Hume's Globe & Mail story on asbestos.
With the number of asbestos-related deaths continuing to climb across Canada, a B.C. union leader is calling for the urgent creation of a national registry of public buildings and marine vessels containing the heat-resistant fibrous mineral that causes cancer.
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/british-columbia/bc-union-leader-ca…

Mesothelioma Awareness Day

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September 26th, 2015 is Mesothelioma Awareness Day. The incidence of mesothelioma, an extremely aggressive cancer, continues to rise. It is now one of the top causes of death in the workplace in Canada. Although the use of new asbestos in Canada has decreased, it remains in old homes and office buildings; it doesn’t just go away. We need your support to fight this terrible disease - to help raise awareness, the critical need for prevention, provide education and support to those affected by mesothelioma as well as to build a network of health care professionals with diagnostic and treatment expertise across Canada for victims of mesothelioma. Until recently, Canada exported asbestos and continues today to import asbestos in items such as brake linings and pipes.

Radiation before surgery more than doubles mesothelioma survival: UHN study

(TORONTO, Canada – January 20, 2014) – Results of clinical research that treated mesothelioma with radiation before surgery show the three-year survival rate more than doubled for study participants afflicted with this deadly disease, compared to treating with surgery first. The findings, published online today ahead of print in the Journal of Thoracic Oncology (DOI 10.1097/JTO.0000000000000078), chart a viable route to treat patients more effectively and also improve their quality of life and potential survival, says principal investigator and lead author Dr. John Cho, radiation oncologist at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, University Health Network (UHN). Dr. Cho is also an Assistant Professor, Department of Radiation Oncology at the University of Toronto. “The patients in our study experienced shorter treatment, fewer complications and speedier recovery,” says Dr. Cho. “The three-year survival rate more than doubled to 72% from 32%.” Mesothelioma is an aggressive malignancy that starts in the lining of the lung and progressively restricts and invades the whole organ. 

Read the entire news release here in the attachment to this article.

CMF announces new online mesothelioma support group

The CMF is proud to announce a brand new initiative on Facebook to enable mesothelioma patients, loved ones and bereaved to connect with one another, share experiences and seek support from others in similar situations.  We are hearing from more and more Canadians citing feelings of loneliness, isolation and helplessness in their struggles with mesothelioma or in caring for a loved one with the disease.  It is our hope that this initiative will help to bring people together to support each other through these difficult times.   

 If interested in joining this private, invite-only group, please send a message to the CMF Facebook page or to info@cmfonline.org with your email address and we will issue an invite.  We hope to hear from you soon.

CMF sponsored workshop on the use of PDT in treating meso

In November 2012, the Princess Margaret Hospital (PMH) Mesothelioma Research Program hosted a 2 day visit by Dr. Keith Cengel, a specialist in radiation oncology and photodynamic therapy (PDT) from the University of Pennsylvania Hospital. Dr. Cengel gave two lectures, the first on emerging technologies for image guided radiotherapy followed by a second on photodynamic therapy for mesothelioma and other thoracic diseases. Photodynamic therapy is a promising new treatment for mesothelioma patients that uses light energy to kill cancer cells. Dr Cengel and other researchers at the Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania have shown that when used in combination with lung-sparing surgery, survival rates of patients with pleural mesothelioma are significantly improved, sometimes more than two years.

The objective of Dr. Cengel's visit was to give the PMH mesothelioma research team an overview of his research and the results of PDT in mesothelioma. Both lectures were well attended by surgeons, radiation oncologists, medical oncologists and physicists from Toronto General Hospital and Princess Margaret Cancer Center. As a result of this visit, the University Health Network (UHN) Mesothelioma Research Program is planning to start photodynamic therapy in selected patients with mesothelioma and, as well, will develop collaborative work with the research team in Philadelphia.