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Get your tickets for our 2022 Giving Hope Gala: Virtual Pool Party Edition!

Join us for a fun, virtual pool party experience in a custom tropical world created just for us! Again this year, we’ll use an online video chat platform that allows us to connect virtually in a more interactive way. You’ll easily be able to move in and out of conversations like you would in person and take part in fun on-site activities, all while supporting an important cause!

The Gala will take place on Thursday, April 28, 2022 ~ 5-8pm PT, 8-11pm ET

Why Attend

Don’t miss the networking event of the year for the skin cancer community!

In real-time audio and video, you’ll be able to connect with Kathy Barnard and the Save Your Skin team, patients and survivors from across Canada, and cancer care stakeholders, all while raising funds for a great cause.

All you need is a computer with wifi and ear buds, a comfortable place to visit virtually, and your ticket! This virtual event gives you the closest thing to a real life party experience. Enjoy music, entertainment, games and great prizes!

All ticket purchases will receive a charitable donation tax receipt.

Celebrate with us ~ Click HERE to get your tickets!

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A Viking’s Challenge 2022 Recap

A Viking’s Challenge 3rd Edition was last weekend and we couldn’t be happier with how the event unfolded.

In total, 51 people participated, running a combined total of 841 km, or the equivalent of 28 crossings of Lake Winnipeg. Though Chris Isfeld’s cancer recurrence and the side-effects from his treatment made it impossible for him to travel to Gimli, MB and run with Shawn Bjornsson, they were united in spirit, along with the 51 other participants across Canada, by the knowledge that they were helping bring awareness to an important issue. Together, they helped raise over $15,000 this year. And donations are still coming in!

The Weekend in Pictures

From top left: Alan Dann, Shawn Bjornsson and friends in Winnipeg, Shawn Bjornsson and friends in Gimli, Shawn Bjornsson and friends at Ship and Plough Tavern, Rosemary Westie and friends, Shawn Bjornsson and a friend, Shannon Lamb-Lebel, Shawn Bjornsson, Emily Chowne, Genevieve and Summer the dog, Rosemary Westie and friends.

 

Thank You to our Sponsors!

Many thanks to the businesses who generously sponsored “A Viking’s Challenge” this year:

  • Bristol Myers Squibb
  • Gimli Ice Festival
  • Ship and Plough Tavern
  • Lakeview Resort Gimli
  • Designer Closet Guys
  • BE Power Equipment

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A Viking’s Challenge 2022 is this weekend!

Want to participate?  It’s not too late!

Event Details

When: The weekend of March 4 – 6, 2022
Where: Anywhere in Canada. Shawn Bjornsson will be running in Gimli, MB, the largest icelandic community outside of Iceland.
How: To participate, you must first register here and pledge to run a certain number of kilometres. We will keep a running tally of the number of kilometres pledged and see how many times we can “cross” Lake Winnipeg.

Each participant will have the option to get a free medal to commemorate their participation. Running shirts and other merchandise are also available for purchase in our Etsy store!

 

A few words from the Founder of A Viking’s Challenge

“Hi everyone, Chris Isfeld here. The last few months have been pretty rough for me. As some of you know, in late 2021, a large mass was found on my right adrenal gland. After fighting melanoma for 3 years and finally getting the all clear in December 2020, this was not the news I’d hoped for. So back I went to treatment, first some radiation and now immunotherapy.

Luckily, I have access to these treatments in my own province, but not all melanoma patients are so fortunate. Many patients end up having to pay out of pocket to get to and from treatments, or worse, have to pay for treatments that aren’t covered. That’s why again this year, I’d like to invite you to participate in A Viking’s Challenge, the fundraiser I founded in 2020 to raise funds for melanoma patients.

Unfortunately, because of my treatment, I won’t be able to run the 30 km across Lake Winnipeg this year, but I’m inviting everyone to join the challenge and run or walk wherever you live. It would mean so much to me and I can assure you that you’d be helping make a big difference in someone’s life. To register or make a donation, visit bit.ly/AVC2022. Thank you!”

 

 

Click here to read more about it in the Abbotsford News

 

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New Report Reveals Opportunities to Improve Cancer Diagnosis – The Most Inefficient Area of Cancer Care in Canada

Cancer is the leading cause of death in Canada. Due to missed diagnoses during the pandemic, we are now facing an echo pandemic in cancer.  Before the pandemic, it was already estimated that 2 in 5 Canadians (40%) would get cancer in their lifetime and 1 in 4 (25%) would die from their disease. With COVID-19, things have just become worse. Alberta, British Columbia, and Quebec reported a 20-23% drop in cancer diagnoses from June – September 2020. It is predicted that cancer care disruptions during the pandemic could lead to 21,247 more cancer deaths in Canada over the next decade. The represents 355,173 years of lost life expected due to pandemic-related diagnostic and treatment delays.

All.Can Canada has launched a new report titled ‘Optimizing Diagnosis in Canadian Cancer Care’, which reveals findings from a comprehensive research project including a literature review, interviews with patients and caregivers, and a survey of healthcare providers across Canada.

“If you don’t get a swift diagnosis and enter into cancer care in a timely fashion, treatment can’t start. We need to listen to what cancer patients say would improve their experience of diagnosis,” says Kathy Barnard, who is a stage IV melanoma survivor, Founder of Save Your Skin Foundation, and a member of All.Can Canada’s steering committee. “People are cycling around trying to get their symptoms investigated for months, sometimes years. This was already happening before COVID-19 and now things are worse. Ignoring the findings of this report would be a missed opportunity to do the right thing by people who desperately need cancer care and make changes that would make a real difference.”

All.Can Canada’s report reveals the labyrinth most people experience when trying to diagnose a suspicion of cancer. From the moment a person tries to interact with a healthcare provider over a suspicion of cancer to the point they receive their diagnosis, seven outcomes were identified as critical to a quality diagnosis experience:

1) Swiftness of the diagnosis process;
2) Validation of concerns by primary care providers;
3) Excellent patient-provider communication;
4) Effective provider-provider communication;
5) Better information;
6) Integrated psychosocial support; and
7) Coordinated and managed care.

All.Can Canada is a patient-led, multi-stakeholder initiative committed to ensuring swift, accurate, and appropriately delivered diagnosis of cancer in Canada.

Find out more about patient-reported inefficiencies and opportunities for improvement in All.Can Canada’s new report.

Download the report: https://bit.ly/3AUhQeO
Or download the summary: https://bit.ly/3oDWvS8

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Webinar: Diagnosed with Skin Cancer? Here’s What To Do Next

View the recording of our webinar ~ February 24, 2022

An Hour with Kathy Barnard

In this webinar, Kathy Barnard, founder of SYSF and melanoma survivor, shares her experience navigating and advocating through the Canadian health care system, which is complicated and can be confusing to many. She helps patients and caregivers understand how to get from diagnosis to surgical and/or systemic treatment of melanoma or non-melanoma skin cancer (NMSC) such as metastatic basal cell carcinoma (BCC), squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) or merkel cell carcinoma (MCC).

Click HERE to view the recording!

And click HERE to download/print a list of Questions you can ask your Doctor

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Important Dates for 2022!

We have a very full and promising year ahead of us and we want you to be part of it! Here are some important dates to add to your calendar:

A Viking’s Challenge (Learn more below) – March 4-6, 2022
Giving Hope Gala – Virtual Pool Party Edition – April 28, 2022 @ 5-8pm PT / 8-11pm ET
Move for Melanoma – September 23-25, 2022
7th Annual Patients Redefining the Future of Health Care in Canada Summit – Week of November 14, 2022

                                                      

                                                       

 

A Viking’s Challenge – Click Here to Register!

In March of 2020, Chris Isfeld and his childhood friend Shawn Bjornsson completed a massive challenge. Three years after Chris was diagnosed with late stage melanoma and became partially paralyzed from the waist down, they ran 30km across frozen Lake Winnipeg and raised almost $20,000 for melanoma patients.

This year, life has thrown Chris yet another curve-ball. A large mass was found on his right adrenal gland, forcing him to stop training to focus on his treatment. Though Chris is hopeful that the immunotherapy treatment that saved his life in 2017 will help him overcome this latest challenge, he needs our support!

Let’s show Chris he is not alone on this journey by joining A Viking’s Challenge and pledging to run or walk! By channeling our inner Vikings, we will make a powerful statement of support for Chris and fellow melanoma patients across Canada.

 

And don’t forget to check your skin every month!

There’s no better time to prioritize your health by making a resolution to check your skin every month for skin cancer.

Monthly skin checks are the best way to detect skin cancer before it spreads. And the easiest way to stick to your resolution is to schedule it! Simply set a monthly notification on your phone to make sure you don’t forget.

Early detection is so important as it can make all the difference in the case of any melanoma OR non-melanoma skin cancer diagnosis.

Click here to learn how to easily perform a skin check at home!

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A Viking’s Challenge 3rd Edition is Here!

In March of 2020, Chris Isfeld and his childhood friend Shawn Bjornsson completed a massive challenge. Three years after Chris was diagnosed with late stage melanoma and recovered from being partially paralyzed from the waist down, they ran 30km across frozen Lake Winnipeg and raised almost $20,000 for melanoma patients.

One year later, they were facing a different kind of Viking’s challenge: a global pandemic that kept Chris from returning to Gimli to run on the lake with Shawn. But that didn’t stop them from getting people all over Canada to join them in running and walking to raise funds and awareness wherever they were.

This year, life has thrown Chris yet another curve-ball. A large mass was found on his right adrenal gland, forcing him to stop training to focus on his treatment. Though Chris is hopeful that the immunotherapy treatment that saved his life in 2017 will help him overcome this latest challenge, he needs our support!

Let’s show Chris he is not alone on this journey by joining A Viking’s Challenge and pledging to run or walk! By channeling our inner Vikings, we will make a powerful statement of support for Chris and fellow melanoma patients across Canada.

All registrants will receive a charitable donation tax receipt and those who want one will receive a beautiful A Viking’s Challenge participant medal. To learn more about Chris’s story and previous years’ events, click here.

 

Event Details

When: March 4 – 6, 2022
Where: Anywhere in Canada. Shawn Bjornsson will be running in Gimli, MB, the largest icelandic community outside of Iceland.
How: To participate, you must first register here and pledge to run a certain number of kilometres. We will keep a running tally of the number of kilometres pledged and see how many times we can “cross” Lake Winnipeg.

Each participant will have the option to get a free medal to commemorate their participation. Special t-shirts and other merchandise are also available for purchase in our Etsy store!

As always, every dollar raised through this event will go directly to assisting melanoma, non melanoma skin cancer and ocular melanoma patients meet their everyday needs during treatment in the form of transportation, accommodation, child care and more.

So what are you waiting for? Register now and start training to channel your inner Viking!

 

 

 

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SYSF Holiday Party 2021

You’re Invited!

Sunday, December 19th at 5pm PT / 8pm ET

 

This party will be hosted in our custom Topia virtual world, with lots of festive activities and surprises. This party is for all patients, family members and friends of the Foundation.

Come in your most festive apparel with your favourite holiday beverage!

Instructions for how to join the party

On Dec 19th, click here to start the party: 

https://topia.io/save-your-skin-foundation

What you’ll need:

  • A computer or a tablet – You’ll need a Windows or Mac desktop or laptop computer equipped with a camera, or a Android Tablet or Ipad.
  • For the best experience on Android tablets please use “desktop mode” in Chrome.
  • A supported web browser – Topia works best on Google Chrome, Edge, and Brave on desktop and laptop computers. For best results we recommend using one of these three browsers.
  • Headphones/ear buds – There is ambient sound in Topia which is personal to you. Headphones ensure a great experience. Without headphones, higher volume can result in feedback for other guests or mixed sounds which isn’t fun for anyone.

How to join:

  • On December 19 at 5pm PT | 8pm ET, click on this link to join: https://topia.io/save-your-skin-foundation. Don’t bother trying to go on beforehand as it will not be available.
  • When you first go in, you will be asked to choose a display name.
  • Your browser will ask for permission to use your camera and audio. If you have Zoom/Teams/Skype open you won’t be able to do this, so please make sure they’re closed first.

What to do once you’re in:

  • You can move around the space using either mouse clicks or your arrow cursor buttons.
  • You hear and see people better the closer you are to their little “Topi,” or person.
  • If you walk away from people you hear and see them less. People “fade out” as they get farther away.
  • As you explore, notice when your cursor turns into a pointer. This indicates that the object your mouse is on has a function. Click to interact with the object.

See you there!!

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Introducing Sty-Lives (Styling Hair and Saving Lives)

We are very pleased to be launching the Sty-Lives (Styling Hair & Saving Lives) program aimed at increasing early detection of skin cancer

The Sty-Lives program is being led by Dr. Miranda Waugh, first year Dermatology resident at the University of Ottawa, and Shannon D’Angelo, medical student at the Northern Ontario School of Medicine, with the support of Save Your Skin Foundation, and leading Dermatologists across Canada.

Through the Sty-Lives program and video, participating salons and barbershops are provided with training materials and resources, and are taught how to detect suspicious spots.

The purpose of the project is to help facilitate communication between the client and their healthcare provider, leading to earlier detection of potentially dangerous skin cancers. The goal is to help with detection, not with diagnosis. Click here to read the full press release

Help us spread the word!

All hair professionals in Canada are eligible to participate. The next time you get your hair cut, tell your hairstylist or barber about this project and invite them to visit www.saveyourskin.ca/sty-lives to learn more and to register.

Watch the video here:

 

 

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Announcing the GetSkinHelp mobile app!

We want you to #StopWaiting and get your skin checked as part of #DigitalHealthWeek!

SYSF is proud to be partnering with Skinopathy for the launch of their mobile app: GetSkinHelp

The GetSkinHelp mobile app allows individuals to access the SkinAI™ technology – an embedded artificial intelligence that allows people to quickly analyze for a selection of skin diseases, including skin cancers – and schedule video appointments with a licensed Canadian doctor who can help determine next steps.

From there, the doctor might suggest an in-person appointment or simply write a prescription, which will be sent to the patient’s home or pharmacy. What is most important is that the app gets a person in front of a doctor faster than traditional means.

Watch this video to learn more:

 

Download the new free #GetSkinHelp app and have your skin concerns analyzed by their SkinAI™ technology. You can then schedule an appointment with a skin doctor and have them check it out virtually. And best of all, it is all covered by provincial health plans!

#StopWaiting and download the app now to get the medical attention YOU need:

Download the app for Apple  |  Download the app for Android

 

See a licensed doctor and heal your skin. All online. On any device.
And covered by Canadian health cards.

In the summer of 2020, Dr. Colin Hong and entrepreneur Keith Loo noticed that the medical delays caused by the pandemic had resulted in greater occurrences of late stage skin cancers being diagnosed. A few months later they created Skinopathy, a medtech company with one simple goal: find answers on how they can help solve this growing public concern.

Save Your Skin Foundation is proud to support the launch of GetSkinHelp – a new service covered by Canadian health cards that allows people to get prompt and virtual medical attention when it comes to skin diseases and skin cancers. Click here to read the press release

At Save Your Skin Foundation, we are an organization dedicated to reducing skin cancers in Canada and providing compassionate support to those living with skin cancer. And we are always on the lookout for ways that can help with that mandate, but we also acknowledge we are not the experts on advanced technology.

As part of Digital Health Week and the #StopWaiting and Get Skin Help campaign, with the folks at Skinopathy, we hosted this roundtable that will help us understand how healthcare is changing due to new technologies, and what needs to happen to keep patients safe. 

The Future of Healthcare – Just Because We Can, Doesn’t Always Mean We Should

Healthcare and technology luminaries discuss how modern technology and social trends are changing healthcare, but are they all good things and what can be done to safeguard patients?

Moderated by Dr. Jonathan Reichental, with Guests – Ashley Casovan, Pirth Singh, and Keith Loo. Click here to view the Roundtable Discussion:

 

#StopWaiting and GetSkinHelp

Download the app for Apple  |  Download the app for Android

***Moderator***

Dr. Jonathan Reichental

Dr. Reichental is the founder of the advisory, investment, and education firm, Human Future. He is also a multiple-award-winning technology and business leader whose career has spanned both the private and public sectors. Most notably, he served as the chief information officer for the City of Palo Alto in California and in 2017 was named one of the top 100 CIOs in the World.

***Guests***

Ashley Casovan

Ashley has been at the forefront of building tools and policy interventions to support the responsible use and adoption of innovative technologies, both with her work at the Government of Canada, and now as the Executive Director of the Responsible AI Institute. She was also named as one of the top 100 most influential Young People in Government by Apolitical in 2018.

Pirth Singh

Pirth is a government maverick and trailblazer who has helped the government of Canada embrace open source technologies. He is now the Assistant Director General for the Industry Canada Innovation, Science and Economic Development team where he is leading the work on the development and implementation of digital credentials.

Keith Loo

Keith is the CEO and Co-Founder of Skinopathy, a Canadian medical technology startup that is revolutionizing the patient circle-of-care. He is heavily involved in the Canadian tech start-up community, consults out of several incubators and accelerators in the Greater Toronto Area, and is an entrepreneurship instructor at the Schulich School of Business.

 

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