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Wednesday, 8 February 2017
Page: 272


Mr CHRISTENSEN (DawsonChief Nationals Whip) (13:43): February is ovarian cancer awareness month, and I was joined at Ovarian Cancer Australia's teal ribbon breakfast this morning by women from my electorate. There were some fantastic women, including Trudy Crowley, who is living with ovarian cancer—she gave a speech there—and survivor Maree Westman, along with their friends and supporters, Jodie Euler and Patrice Jamieson.

Ovarian cancer affects many families, including the friends and family of Mackay's Dakota Rose, who was nine years old when she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer last May. With a five-year survival rate of just 43 per cent, ovarian cancer has the lowest survival rates of any women's cancer, so there is a lot of support needed for the women—and children—diagnosed and for their families. Ovarian Cancer Australia is seeking more funding to continue support and to reach a wider group of women with ovarian cancer. More emphasis also needs to be placed on priority driven research, with a focus on better treatment options.

I agree, and I want people like Trudy and Maree and their families, and all of those who are battling ovarian cancer, to get the support they need. I will be advocating on their behalf for the funding that can improve quality of life and help to extend life. I will also be facilitating meetings with the Primary Health Network and the Mackay Hospital and Health Service to see what local funding might be available for a support network in Mackay and maybe throughout all of North Queensland.