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Helena Kountoura on Europa Donna Hellas’ importance and work

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Helena Kountoura, the Greek alternate minister for Tourism

Helena Kountoura, the Greek alternate minister for Tourism

You all know how important Health, Safety and Well Being is and you all read from time to time in the respective categories herein such issues. You also know how important are Women in our Shipping Industry and WISTA is the reply! Herebelow is what Helena Kountoura, the Greek Alternate Minister for Tourism, Greece’s second biggest currency earner after Shipping, on the issue of Health and Safety, in her capacity as president of Europa Donna Hellas, recently presented:

“Breast cancer is the most common cancer and has the highest mortality of any cancer in women worldwide

All women all over the world, should have access to fully equipped, quality-assured dedicated breast units that provide competent comprehensive care.

Screening carried out according to the European guidelines provides a significant benefit to women in improving mortality rates from this disease when combined with modern treatment. It is thus important for women to have access to screening programmes that meet guidelines and to correct evidence based information. As evidence stands at the moment, mammography screening is the best form of early detection of breast cancer available today and it does improve mortality rates

Fighting breast cancer must return to the top of countries’ health agendas. All women (and genetically predisposed men) should have the right to access quality screening programmes, a proper diagnosis and quality-assured modern treatment in specialised, multidisciplinary breast units. And this right should not only exist on paper, but be implemented in reality. Every country should have a national cancer registry which can provide reliable data on the situation.

Europa Donna, the European breast cancer advocacy organisation representing groups in 46 European countries, which continuously reviews all the evidence, supports population-based mammography screening programmes when carried out in accordance with the European guidelines for quality assurance in breast cancer screening and diagnosis.

Some of our goals are:

  • To promote breast awareness
  • To emphasise the need for appropriate screening and early detection
  • To campaign for provision of quality supportive care throughout and after treatment

Also our priority is the cancer advocacy that can break taboos and stigmas.

  • Advocacy can also lead to the changing of attitudes and beliefs of society, as well as of standards. Advocates need to be well informed and well-educated. Breast cancer has been one of the most dynamic fields where patient advocacy has resulted in changing the face of the disease.
  • Advocacy can also put pressure at the governments to return to the top of all country’s health agendas.

And the most important today is all of you to understand how crucial is to support these priorities.”

We are more than sure that both women and men and in fact WISTA-Hellas, as well as all the other WISTAs will take note of this insight comment.

Moreover, we advise you of the forthcoming 12th EUROPA DONNA Pan European Conference Paris – France 17-18 October 2015.  Log on www.europadonna.org for further details.


Viewers in Greece can log on www.europadonna.gr  and see the Greek section’s work.

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