Complementing population health cancer data disparities with Aboriginal patient and carer experiences

Canuto, K. (Speaker), Howard, N. (Author), Morey, K. (Author), Brown, A. (Author)

Activity: Talk or presentationOral presentation


Peer-reviewed abstract

Background: Cancer is the second most common cause of death for Australian Indigenous peoples and within the next decade is predicted to overtake cardiovascular disease to become the primary cause of death. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with cancer experience worse outcomes than other Australians due to the types of cancers they encounter, advanced stages of their cancers at diagnosis, high levels of co-morbidity, incomplete treatments and a range of other geographic, social and cultural barriers that remain to be fully elucidated. Mixed-method approaches privileging Aboriginal people’s perspectives will enhance understandings on the disparities in Aboriginal cancer outcomes.

What was done: A case study from an Aboriginal-led National Health and Medical Research Council funded project, the South Australian (SA) Cancer Data and Aboriginal Disparities (CanDAD) study, will provide the lens for this presentation. Project governance from the CanDAD Aboriginal Community Reference Group includes SA Aboriginal people with a lived experience of cancer. CanDAD uniquely has developed a platform for implementing an integrated, comprehensive cancer monitoring system with a focus on SA Aboriginal people. The project has established knowledges on current data capabilities and monitoring system needs, whilst concurrently depicting Aboriginal patients’ experiences with cancer services. CanDAD was able to contextualise the data story with qualitative interviews with Aboriginal cancer patients/survivors, and carers. Complementing these data enables a richer data story across cancer pathways from participation in screening, diagnosis, comorbidities, cancer treatment and outcomes.

Outcomes: Whilst CanDAD was innovative on ways of working with cancer data systems, the challenge remains to ensure emerging findings are translated into improving cancer prevention and treatment for Aboriginal peoples. The research has already informed SA Aboriginal cancer policies and translational activities; including a screening initiative for Aboriginal peoples’ as well as informing plans for transforming chemotherapy centres into ‘Wellness Centres’ that provide holistic care.
Period17 Sep 201919 Sep 2019
Event titleWorld Indigenous Cancer Conference: Repect, Reconciliation, Reciprocity
Event typeConference
LocationCalgary, Canada