Cancer Care

Every family has been touched by cancer; it affects us all.

We know that Manitoba families count on quality cancer care. That’s why we’re building the best system in the country to deliver the fastest screening, diagnosis and treatment.

  • We created a first-in-Canada IN SIXTY cancer patient strategy to streamline the stressful process of referrals, testing and diagnosis for families. Our goal is to reduce the time between the first suspicion of cancer to starting treatment to two months or less.

  • We’ve expanded all 16 rural chemotherapy centres into full CancerCare hubs, so that rural patients can more easily access the care they need, closer to home.

  • We cover 100% of the cost of approved cancer medication and support drugs so that patients can receive treatment in the comfort of their own home—something Pallister’s Conservatives failed to support. Now families can choose what works best for them without worrying about the cost.

Instead of making reckless cuts, like Brian Pallister is pushing for—which would mean laying off nurses and cancelling new clinics—we’re investing to make Manitoba one of the strongest cancer care hubs in the world.

Cancer Care Stats & Facts

According to the Canadian Cancer Society and the Public Health Agency of Canada, our survival rate for cancer has increased significantly since the 1990s. We have more to do, but we’re headed in the right direction.

Right now, the biggest threat to our cancer care system is Conservative leader Brian Pallister’s plan to recklessly push to balance the budget two years sooner than it’s reasonably doable. To do this, he’ll half to cut half a billion dollars from the budget—including from health care.

Our NDP government knows that deep cuts to health will hurt Manitoba families and cripple our health care system. Instead, we’re working to make sure that your family can count on getting the care you need, when you need it.

Cancer Patient Journey Strategy

We are working to make cancer wait times the shortest in the country. Manitoba already has the shortest wait times in the country for radiation therapy, down from dangerously long waits the last time the Conservatives were in government.

Now we need to reduce the time it takes to get tested and diagnosed. We’re working to reduce the time between suspicion of cancer and treatment to two months or less.

Our IN SIXTY Cancer Patient Journey Strategy, announced in 2011, is a $40-million, comprehensive and first-in-Canada cancer strategy—the most aggressive in the country.

Our plan, which includes all recommendations from the Canadian Cancer Society, emphasizes:

  • Establishing 16 community CancerCare hubs, with cancer patient advocates who will take care of scheduling appointments and coordinate faster care for rural patients.

  • Providing faster cancer screening and testing by hiring more pathologists and cancer testing coordinators.

  • Introducing cancer patient journey advocates to monitor and help cancer patients and families through their entire journey, identify delays and issues, and work to resolve them to ensure timely diagnosis and treatment.

  • Establishing the Manitoba Partnership Against Cancer, a coalition of health care leaders focused on and ensuring all parts of the health care system integrate their services and implement system-wide changes as rapidly and efficiently as possible to deliver patient-centered care.

  • Enhancing supports for Manitobans who want to quit smoking, including an additional $2 million in Budget 2015 to help fight smoking.

Last spring, Fort Richmond MLA Kerri Irvin-Ross invited the BreastCheck mobile clinic to set up in her constituency office and provide free screening opportunities for families in Fort Richmond.

Manitoba has made marked progress in the fight against cancer with improved screening, expanded treatment services and more preventive measures by investing more than $100 million in the battle against cancer.

In 2011, we committed over $70 million towards a new Cancer Care building to complement the existing site at HSC. This will make our cancer system not only the best in Canada, but among the best in the world, with:

  • Canada’s first Colorectal Cancer Centre of Excellence

  • Molecular and Genetic Testing Centre

  • Aboriginal Cancer Centre of Excellence

  • Manitoba Cancer Research Centre, to increase access to clinical trials

  • Team-based clinic space, so patients can meet all cancer professionals together

In May 2013, we opened the new Urgent Cancer Care Clinic, located on the main floor of the CancerCare Manitoba building. Patients can get diagnostic tests and prescribed medication from dedicated health professionals at the clinic, rather than having to go to the hospital or wait to see their oncologists.

We also created a Cancer Helpline at 204-787-8900, which patients can call for advice on managing their symptoms or side effects.

In the past year, we established a new virtual Winnipeg Cancer Hub in Winnipeg ERs and primary care clinics to provide better access to expert advice, psychological support and improved navigation services for patients suspected of having cancer.

October 2015