The global community is addressing the ways the pandemic has harmed people living with lymphomas
September 15, 2021
Today, on World Lymphoma Awareness Day, Lymphoma Australia is standing with the global lymphoma community to tackle the ways the pandemic has been detrimental to people living with lymphomas. In a unified call – We Can’t Wait – patients, caregivers, healthcare professionals and patient organisations are addressing the unintended consequences that have impacted people living with lymphomas.
Since the start of the pandemic, worldwide cancer diagnoses have dropped significantly. Cancers aren’t being caught because of a lack of screening programs and people afraid of seeking medical attention when they notice symptoms. An increase in more cases of advanced cancer is expected.
Related to treatment, patients have foregone in-person medical assessments and experienced delays in their regularly scheduled treatments.
“People have supported healthcare systems through the Covid-19 crisis, which was important, but we can’t wait any longer,” says Lorna Warwick, CEO of Lymphoma Coalition, a worldwide network of lymphoma patient organisations. “We need to address the significant effect the pandemic has had on the lymphoma community now – we can’t wait.”
Join the Call: We Can’t Wait
Lymphoma Australia is calling on Australians to join the global conversation in support of people living with lymphoma on 15 September to recognise World Lymphoma Awareness Day.
Visit www.WorldLymphomaAwarenessDay.org for materials to share on social media with #WLAD2021.
We are also encouraging our Australian community to go #LIME4LYMPHOMA during September – Lymphoma Awareness Month as lime is the colour for lymphoma on the cancer rainbow.
The We Can’t Wait campaign highlights the most urgent areas of improvement for people living with lymphomas:
- We Can’t Wait for the pandemic to end to start diagnosing lymphomas. These delays can lead to a more serious diagnosis or negative prognosis
- We Can’t Wait to take care of our own health. If you notice the signs or symptoms of lymphoma, do not delay and speak to your healthcare team
- We can’t wait any longer to treat lymphomas. Decisions were made to support healthcare systems that affected patients, but the time has come to resume standard treatment practices safely.
- We can’t wait to pay attention when living with lymphomas. If you’ve been diagnosed with lymphoma do not delay reporting any new symptoms to your doctor. Also make sure to keep your appointments with your health team.
- We Can’t Wait to support people living with lymphomas. The needs of patients have increased during the pandemic. If you can, please volunteer or support our organisation [add link if applicable].
Lymphoma is the cancer of the lymphatic system (lymphocytes or white blood cells). Around the world, more than 735,000 people are diagnosed every year. In Australia, approximately 6,900 people will be diagnosed in 2021.
Symptoms can be similar to other illnesses such as the flu or even Covid-19. Symptoms of lymphoma include:
- Painless swelling in the lymph nodes
- Chills or temperature swings
- Recurrent fever
- Excessive sweating
- Unexplained weight loss
- Loss of appetite
- Tiredness, or general fatigue
- Breathlessness and coughing
- Persistent itch all over the body without an apparent cause or rash
About World Lymphoma Awareness Day
World Lymphoma Awareness Day is held on 15 September every year around the world. Since its launch in 2004, it has been a day dedicated to raising awareness of lymphomas, cancers of the lymphatic system. This year, the World Lymphoma Awareness Day campaign is We Can’t Wait, a campaign focused on tackling the unintended impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the lymphoma community.
About Lymphoma Coalition
Lymphoma Coalition a worldwide network of lymphoma patient organisations that acts as a central hub for reliable and current information. Its mission is to enable global impact by fostering a lymphoma ecosystem that ensures local change and evidence-based action and advocating for equitable care around the world. Today, there are more than 80 member organisations from over 50 countries.
For more information about Lymphoma Coalition, please visit www.lymphomacoalition.org.