Date/Time: November 23, 2022 – 5pm-6:30 pm PT / 8pm-9:30 pm ET
This webinar will focus on the experience of cancer survivors and the importance of mental wellness from the perspective of four women with unique backgrounds and experiences in the cancer space. Shannon Gaudette, a melanoma stage 4 survivor, will talk about her physical and emotional wellbeing throughout her cancer experience. She will be followed by Antonella Scali, Executive Director of the Canadian Psoriasis Network and the daughter of a cancer survivor, who will talk about the results of a survey completed by All.Can Canada and implications for mental health and the need for psychosocial supports. Then, Kathy Barnard, president of the Save Your Skin Foundation and a melanoma stage 4 survivor, will talk about her experience as a long-time survivor. Finally, Lyanne Westie, SYSF wellness support consultant, will present on the importance of mental wellness in all aspects of life. These short presentations will be followed by a discussion between the four presenters, with time for questions from webinar attendees.
Save Your Skin Foundation partnered with medical student siblings Samuel and Karen Farag, and the municipalities of Summerside, PEI, Riverview, NB, New Westminster, BC, and Brooks, AB – as well as BC Cancer – to launch 10 dispensers in early August 2022.
The dispensers are automatic and touchless, and provide free, Health Canada approved SPF 30 sunscreen for anyone who needs it. The sunscreen is zinc oxide based, free from chemical sunscreen filters, common allergens and toxic ingredients including oxybenzone, avobenzone, retinyl palminate, PEG, parfume, and sodium lauryl sulphate. See image below for more details.
Here are the locations of the dispensers as of August, 2022:
Applying sunscreen is part of an overall sun-safe way to enjoy the outdoors. First, limit your time in the direct sunlight, especially between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., seek shade, cover up by wearing long sleeves and pants and a wide-brimmed hat. Use sunscreen, specifically one labelled broad-spectrum, SPF 30, protect the lips with lip sunscreen or zinc oxide. Apply 20 minutes before sun exposure, and reapply every two hours or after swimming.
Affixed to the Dispensers is a list of the sunscreen ingredients and reference to Health Canada’s approval of the sunscreen, as well as a disclaimer with respect to the use of the Dispenser or the sunscreen contained therein:
THE SUNSCREEN IS BEING USED AT YOUR OWN RISK. None of Save Your Skin Foundation, (participating cities), nor anyone else connected to these organizations, makes any assurances, representations, guarantees or warranties with respect to the use or effectiveness of the sunscreen or dispenser, and any and all use of the sunscreen or dispenser is done at your own risk. By using the sunscreen or the dispenser, you acknowledge and agree that none of Save Your Skin Foundation, (participating cities and organizations to be listed) nor anyone else connected to these organizations are responsible for the results or consequences from any use of the sunscreen or dispenser.
The term ‘survivor’ can mean different things to different people. For some, a survivor may have completed active treatment and is free from any signs of melanoma or non-melanoma skin cancer. For others, the term may refer to anyone who has been diagnosed with melanoma skin cancer, or any type of cancer, at any point in their journey.
During treatment, just getting through each day can take all of the energy we have, making it hard to think about anything else, especially life after treatment. After treatments are over, many people experience mixed emotions of being glad it’s over, yet anxious about what the future may hold. This may be an unexpectedly challenging period of adjustment, so be sensitive to your own needs. Don’t expect to always feel good now that you’re out of treatment, and take the time you need to come to terms with what you have been through.
How can we define ‘survivorship’?
‘Survivorship’ can have many different meanings, depending on your outlook on the situation. The Canadian Cancer Society suggests a way of defining a cancer survivor as anyone who:
~ has finished and is recovering from their active cancer treatment
~ is on maintenance therapy
~ is having ongoing treatment for cancer that is stable and slow growing
~ is on active surveillance
~ is in remission or “NED” – having no evidence of disease
At wherever point you are in your cancer experience, ‘survivorship’ means simply what it means to you. If you believe that you are a survivor, take this label on and be proud of your strength!
Save Your Skin Foundation wishes to bring hope and support to all those newly diagnosed, currently undergoing treatment, or to those referred to as “NED.” We have several resources and sources of information and support listed through our website, some of which include:
Updated Canadian Statistics on Cancer Survivorship
The number of newly diagnosed cancer cases in Canada is increasing, but survival rates are also increasing, resulting in a greater need to address the unique challenges of cancer survivorship. Survival rates are increasing thanks to innovative medicines such as immunotherapy and targeted therapy treatments, many of which were first invented and tested for the treatment of melanoma skin cancer.
The 5-year survival rate for melanoma in 2015-2017 was 89%. Read our 2022 distillation of the CCS report with a focus on melanoma: SYSF Recap Report – Canadian Cancer Society Statistics 2021
Hand in Hand, We Fight Skin Cancer Together – More Resources at these links:
Innovative Treatments – Taking Patients from Diagnosis to Survivorship
Decision-Support Tool For Stage III Melanoma
Customized for the Canadian audience, this pamphlet is a document to provide/discuss with patients that helps guide their decision making regarding next steps for stage III melanoma. Reviewed by Save Your Skin Foundation, updated February 2021:
Options for Stage III Melanoma ~ Making the Decision That’s Right for You
Want to learn how to use the Stage III Decision-Support Tool? Peruse frequently asked questions about Stage III melanoma and learn how to use the support tool to guide your decision making. Also developed in collaboration with Save Your Skin Foundation, updated February 2021:
Options for Stage III Melanoma: Making the Decision That’s Right for You, Companion Piece
Decision-Support Tool For Stage IV Melanoma
Newly customized for the Canadian audience, this pamphlet, created by AIM at Melanoma and reviewed by Save Your Skin Foundation in March 2022, is a document to support patients and help guide their decision making regarding next steps for stage IV melanoma:
Stage IV Melanoma Treatment Options: Making the Decision That’s Right for You
The document addresses:
– Stage IV melanoma clinical picture, biomarkers and pathology, and disease and patient factors involved in decision making
– Efficacy, safety, administration, and family-planning aspects of targeted therapies, immune checkpoint inhibitors, and other therapies used for stage IV melanoma
I’m Living Proof
When Save Your Skin Founder Kathy Barnard was diagnosed with metastatic malignant melanoma in 2003, the first thing she did was look to the internet for anything that would inspire optimism for her prognosis; hopeful news, survivors, or treatment options. She didn’t find much. Now as you can see there is a plethora of information and resources to help us though our skin cancer journey.
At any time, you can contact us at email@example.com, or call Kathy directly at 1-800-460-5832
You can also find other patients or survivors on our I’m Living Proof map of stars – request to connect with someone on the map, choose to share your story, or simply read through others’ experiences – you are not alone.
(le français suit)
Don’t miss our webinar with Dr. Marcus Butler, the Medical Oncology Disease Site Lead for Melanoma/Skin Oncology at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre and Assistant Professor of Medicine at the University of Toronto. He is also the Clinical Director for the Immune Monitoring Team at the Princess Margaret where he focuses on the immunologic impact of anti-cancer immunotherapies.
This webinar reviews late breaking news, key takeaways, clinical data and other updates presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting taking place in Chicago, Illinois, in June 2022.
Dr. Butler shares his key insights into what the landscape of melanoma, non-melanoma skin cancers, and ocular melanoma treatment looks like for the near future in Canada.
WEBINAIRE : Mise à jour sur le mélanome/cancer de la peau/mélanome oculaire de l’ASCO 2022
Regardez l’enregistrement du webinaire avec le Dr Marcus Butler, responsable du site d’oncologie médicale pour le mélanome et l’oncologie de la peau au Princess Margaret Cancer Centre et professeur adjoint de médecine à l’Université de Toronto. Il est également le directeur clinique de l’équipe de surveillance immunitaire du Princess Margaret, où il se concentre sur l’impact immunologique des immunothérapies anticancéreuses.
Ce webinaire a passé en revue les dernières nouvelles, les points essentiels, les données cliniques et d’autres mises à jour présentées lors de l’assemblée annuelle de l’American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) qui a eu lieu à Chicago, en Illinois, en juin 2022.
Le Dr Butler a partagé ses idées clés sur ce à quoi ressemble le paysage du traitement du mélanome, des cancers de la peau autres que le mélanome et du mélanome oculaire dans un avenir proche au Canada.
May is Melanoma and Skin Cancer Awareness Month
This May, Save Your Skin Foundation and Ocumel Canada are running local, national and international campaigns to raise awareness on the importance of prevention and early detection of skin cancers. See a full list of our Melanoma Skin Cancer Month and Ocular Melanoma awareness initiatives HERE.
For the third year in a row, Save your Skin Foundation’s proclamation initiative has invited Canadian municipalities to take a stance against skin cancer and educate their communities on sun safety through mayoral proclamations. Over 38 municipalities across 8 provinces have issued signed Proclamations to proclaim the month of May 2022 ‘Melanoma and Skin Cancer Awareness Month’. Look for your city on the list here
Members of our SYSF team have also had the honour to present to the Mayors and Councils of a dozen municipalities across the country to share their experiences as patients and spread the message of sun safety and early detection of skin cancer.
Skin check awareness
Save Your Skin Foundation is part of the Global Melanoma Coalition, a group of 43 organizations from 28 different countries bringing the patient voice to the melanoma space. The below videos have been created in collaboration with the Global Coalition.
It’s funny what you can miss when you’re not looking for it. Watch the Global Coalition video and learn the importance of checking your skin for melanoma and skin cancer:
Skin self-exam tutorial
This video covers the ABCD&E warning signs of melanoma and skin cancer, and the seven steps for checking the body. Pauses between the seven steps have been included in the film, so you can simply take your phone or tablet into a bathroom, hit play, and follow the instructions in real time:
Having regular eye examinations could save your life! Routine eye tests can lead to early detection of ocular melanoma and many other health issues. However, statistics show that we are not visiting the optometrist as frequently as we should.
Make a commitment to booking an eye exam this month!
This year, Save Your Skin Foundation is running local, national and international campaigns to raise awareness on the importance of prevention and early detection of skin cancers. See a full list of our Melanoma Month initiatives HERE.
Click here to read the news, April 29, 2022: Save Your Skin Foundation Runs Local, National and International Campaigns to Increase Skin Cancer Awareness During Melanoma Awareness Month
A common diagnosis with a rare outcome – Helen’s Story
Almost a decade ago, in 2013, Helen found a spot along her hairline that worried her. Two different doctors told her it was nothing to worry about before a dermatologist recognized it as cancerous and had it removed. And that was that, she was assured. Most skin cancers are easily dealt with and life goes on. But, based on her pathology report, Helen had a feeling that this ordeal was far from over.
It takes a village to stand up to cancer: Helen’s story via Macleans.ca
We have partnered with the Ontario Professional Hairstylist Association (OPHA) to create the Sty-Lives OPHA Challenge, which aims to train 200 hair professionals to detect potential skin cancers by May 31, 2022.
The initiative behind the challenge is Styling Hair & Saving Lives (Sty-Lives). Led by two medical students, with the support of SYSF, it aims to empower and educate hairstylists and barbers to detect suspicious skin lesions on the ears, face and scalp of their clients. 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.
As of this writing, the Sty-Lives OPHA Challenge has already reached 83% of its recruitment goal.
Melanoma Month Apparel
Check out our Melanoma Month Collection of Shirts perfect for the melanoma warrior or supporter in your life. As always, the proceeds from the sale of our SYSF merchandise goes directly towards supporting patients when they need it most. Visit our Etsy Store!
Thanks to Giving Hope Gala 2022 Sponsors & Supporters
This year’s pool party-themed gala was a lot of fun. A huge thank you to all who joined us and an even bigger thank you to all our sponsors who donated generously to make this event a success. We’ll have more information on the gala, including lots of pictures, in our next newsletter, so stay tuned!
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
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:
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:
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.
Moderated by Dr. Jonathan Reichental, with Guests – Ashley Casovan, Pirth Singh, and Keith Loo. Click here to view the Roundtable Discussion:
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.
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 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 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.
Save Your Skin Foundation is pleased to endorse and announce the release of the new Guidelines for Patients booklet on Basal Cell Carcinoma (BCC, or Basal Cell Skin Cancer) from the National Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN®).
This informative pdf-downloadable or print version booklet will help patients understand their BCC diagnosis and support them through their surgical and treatment options journey. BCC primarily impacts lighter-skinned, sun-exposed people over age 60, due to the buildup of sun exposure over the years. However, skin cancer has recently become more common in younger people, likely as a result of them spending more time in the sun. In very rare instances untreated BCC can progress significantly and be life-threatening. This new resource provides trustworthy information based on the latest evidence, and is available online at NCCN.org/patientguidelines
NCCN® guidelines are easy to read, free, well illustrated, valuable resources for patients and caregivers, available as online e-booklets, download-able PDF files, or on the “NCCN Guides for Cancer” app for iPhone or Android devices and tablets. Though these guidelines are developed with best practices in use in the United States, the resources do apply to patients and clinicians in Canada (where treatment options and accessibility apply), as confirmed with members of the Save Your Skin Foundation Medical Advisory Board. Canadian doctors do refer to the NCCN® clinical guidelines, and they do support the distribution of NCCN® patient guidelines to Canadian patients.
To view the full collection of National Comprehensive Cancer Network® Guidelines for Patients on melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancers and related treatments and resources, please view our page here:
And for more information about Basal Cell Carcinoma, including our 2020 webinar on the topic, please visit our page here:
The Patient books are available for free to view and print at NCCN.org/patients or via the NCCN Patient Guides for Cancer App: Virtual Library of NCCN Guidelines® App – Available for iPhone/iPad and Android Smartphone/Tablet
The National Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN®) is a not-for-profit alliance of 28 leading cancer centers devoted to patient care, research, and education. NCCN is dedicated to improving and facilitating quality, effective, efficient, and accessible cancer care so patients can live better lives. Through the leadership and expertise of clinical professionals at NCCN Member Institutions, NCCN develops clinical practice guidelines appropriate for use by patients, clinicians, and other health care decision-makers around the world.