Friday, 17 June 2011
ECU researchers are using the power of social media to create an online community which provides help and support for people with breast cancer as well as their family, friends and carers.
Breast Cancer Click, known as The CLICK, was officially launched at ECU’s Mount Lawley Campus on Friday, 17 June in conjunction with Purple Bra Day celebrations.
The unique website is the first of its kind to integrate health professional advice and support into an online forum and has been developed as part of a three-year ECU and Australian Research Council PhD project in conjunction with industry partners Breast Cancer Care WA and Steel Blue’s Purple Boot Brigade.
The website gives those affected the opportunity to share their concerns, stories and difficulties with those who have gone through, or are currently going through, the challenges associated with breast cancer along with receiving expert advice.
“The research is aimed at providing guidelines for the development of a dynamic, health focused online community, which integrates professional health care support,” said The CLICK researcher Ms Cynthia Witney.
“For the participants themselves it is a chance to gain information and support from health care professionals and advice and encouragement from their peers, hopefully leading to reduced distress during their breast cancer experiences.”
General Manager of Breast Cancer Care WA, Donna Rendell, said the website will provide support for those affected by the disease.
"Breast cancer affects so many people, not just those with breast cancer but their family and support network. Making advances in the use of latest technologies to provide support to people across Australia adds to our ability to provide much-needed advice into areas otherwise unable to take advantage of our free services,” said Ms Rendell.
An inaugural member of The CLICK Tanya Sim, has found the website invaluable as she copes with overcoming the disease.
“It’s great to know that there are people out there who are going through the same difficulties and challenges as me. The CLICK gives me the chance to connect with others from across Australia and understand that whatever challenges I’m facing, I’m not facing them alone.”
For more information, see http://www.breastcancerclick.com.au/