Looking Ahead: Closing Gaps in Cancer Care for Black Women

2020-10-08 6:50:34 PM

Cancer research tells a shocking story: Black women are often diagnosed with more aggressive forms of cancer and they often receive a diagnosis at a later stage of the disease.
“A big part of the problem is that we just don’t know why this is happening,” says Elaine Goulbourne, Administrative Director of the Peter Gilgan Centre for Women’s Cancers at Women’s College Hospital. “We know that Black women are facing enormous gaps when it comes to cancer screening, diagnosis and care, but in order to close these gaps, we need more research and effective strategies to help women make informed decisions.”
That’s why the Peter Gilgan Centre for Women’s Cancers at Women’s College Hospital, in partnership with the Canadian Cancer Society, has begun laying important groundwork for research and clinical program development to empower researchers, clinicans and, most importantly, women themselves with the evidence-based data they need to make a real difference in cancer survivorship for Black women.
“At Women’s College Hospital, we have an incredible team of champions and a deep network of partners who are committed to getting these initiatives up and running,” says Elaine. “And the Peter Gilgan Centre uses a powerful framework to guide our work.”
Following the four pillars of the Centre – Research, Innovation, Integrated Care and Education & Empowerment – the team is  developing research proposals that prioritize the collection of race-based data; tapping into community partnerships to reach more women for screening and testing; and developing education modules and knowledge translation tools to empower women and their care providers with the information they need to ensure better care and treatment options. 
“Now is the time to be mobilizing for these women,” says Elaine. “By firing on all cylinders with a well-rounded approach, we can finally begin to tackle the systemic disparities that are preventing Black women from receiving the high quality, informed cancer care they need and deserve.”
Your generosity makes it possible for Women’s College Hospital to continue conducting innovative research that is closing gaps in cancer care for Black women. If you would like to deepen your support of these life-changing initiatives, donate online today at www.wchf.ca or call 416-323-6323. Thank you!