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Services for Metastatic Breast Cancer Patients

11 September 2006

Invigorating Services for Metastatic Breast Cancer Patients

Just a year after its public launch and initial fundraising event, the Louise Perkins Foundation is launching "Sweet Louise" services to metastatic breast cancer patients, initially in the Auckland region, with plans to expand as quickly as possible to other geographic regions.

A public presentation with details of Sweet Louise services is being held on Monday 30 October. Eligible patients are able to access services from November using a points-based voucher system which allows each patient to choose services to meet her key area of need. The costs of the services are being met by the Louise Perkins Foundation.

All services offered are in line with the Louise Perkins Foundation philosophy of offering strategies and services that improve the quality of life of women with metastatic breast cancer.

Foundation Chairman Scott Perkins says "Sweet Louise services will fill a gap in what is currently available, and will complement but by no means replace the great care and medical treatment that patients receive from their medical team and other organisations offering support in the breast cancer arena.

"Recently we've discovered that there is plenty of confirmatory research emerging that validates the Louise Perkins Foundation approach and confirms the need for the kind of complementary strategies we're offering. I believe that we're right on target."

All metastatic breast cancer patients in the Auckland region are eligible for Sweet Louise services. Metastatic breast cancer is cancer that has recurred and spread since its initial diagnosis.

The Sweet Louise services are being offered in the following key areas:

Sweet Louise Helpers (practical help, including child care, gardening and lawn mowing, handyman services, personal home care and home cleaning services);

Sweet Louise Mind (strategies that may improve emotional wellbeing, including art therapy, counselling, positive mind techniques and group support);

Sweet Louise Body (strategies that may improve physical wellbeing, including exercise, diet, beauty, massage and Reiki).

Sophisticated IT systems have been developed to support the provision of the services, and a new website (www.sweetlouise.co.nz) provides extensive information for patients and medical professionals. Information has also been produced in hard copy.

In addition, Sweet Louise is employing a Patient Support Co-ordinator to provide advice and support to women with breast cancer, help in understanding the physical and emotional impacts of the disease, and assistance in selecting the services to best support each woman at each stage of her journey.

The Louise Perkins Foundation is inspired by the life of Louise Perkins. Diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 27, Louise continued to enjoy a rich and full life. In addition to receiving great medical care, she filled her time with reasons to live. She discovered a myriad of ways that helped her deal with the day to day experiences of breast cancer.

ENDS

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