Very brief overview of some of DACC work…
Among some of DACC’s many successes is the Awareness Rally in May 06 where 15,000 people came out onto the streets of Letterkenny in a respectful and dignified manner. Donegal had never seen anything like it before. Again in June 06 over 1000 people gathered in front of Letterkenny General Hospital on a Friday night for a Candlelight Vigil till midnight.
Another success is the book “You Are Not Alone” Sept. 2007. This book was updated, re-printed and renamed in 2010,
“ Cancer- You Are Not Alone”
In August 08 we saw the new full time Breast Surgeon take up his post at Letterkenny University Hospital after more than 3 years of work by DACC. We have & continue to lobby since 2009 for a 2nd Breast Surgeon. We are still active on this.
DACC mounted a major postcard campaign in Sep/Oct 2008 to ensure that the Colposcopy Unit which was under threat would remain at LGH and that LUH will be officially named as a dedicated Colposcopy unit.
DACC were proactive in May 2009 in ensuring that the Government granted derogation on the Moratorium on recruitment to allow for staff to be recruited, so that the roll-out of Breast Check in Donegal could commence in 2009. DACC worked hard in 2010 and secured a second BreastCheck Unit into Inishowen when we highlighted that screening was lagging behind by two years. It has now been removed!
In 2010 DACC were proactive in contacting the Irish Cancer Society seeking to have Daffodil Centre at Letterkenny University Hospital. This is now in place.
DACC had concerns that patients were unable to avail of Lymphedema services at Letterkenny Hospital and sought to have this service also available in the community hospitals which did happen.
DACC were instrumental in working with Prof. Tom Keane to ensure that a Colorectal Surgeon was recruited for Letterkenny Hospital.
DACC hosted the first cancer conference that we know off in Donegal with Prof. John Crowne as our keynote speaker. We also hosted successful Men’s Health Evenings and also were invited to by secondary schools to come and talk to them regarding our work.
Through the years DACC have kept the pressure on regarding many key services for cancer patients.
We had worked hard in teh past to have a Prostate Rapid Access Service at Letterkenny University Hospital this didn’t happen back a few years ago. We have put this back on our agenda in 2015 with the new Radiotheraphy Unit at Altnagelvin Hospital it shouldn’t be the case that Donegal men have to travel to Galway to a Prostate Rapid Acess Clinic and then if they need Radiotheraphy go to Altngelvin. We need the Prostate Rapid Access Servive at Letterkenny Hospital.
DACC also work with the Marie Keating Foundation, The Irish Cancer Society, Europa Donna Ireland also local cancer groups, women & men’s groups in supporting their work and relevant events in the county & elsewhere. We continue to help individuals & families when requested with appointment difficulties, medical card & other queries. DACC have been involved with the next Cancer Strategy 2016-2025 as part of the Patient Forum travelling to Dublin on a very regular basis by bus.
DACC have kept the pressure on now for over 12 years, kept cancer services and issues on the agenda. DACC are continually seeking and attending meetings with politicians, members of the Government, HSE and anyone who can help them achieve improved cancer care and services for the people of Donegal.
DACC strongly believe at this time 2017 if we the people of Donegal do not unite regarding our key health services not just cancer we will loose even more health services!!!