Pathways, Canada's new Lymphedema Magazine, is a new subscription based publication, targeted to patients living with lymphedema and the health professionals that support their care.
Interested subscribers are encouraged to support the local lymphedema organization in their province (and receive among other benefits, the magazine plus a local provincial insert free). Here are the organizations to contact, depending on where you reside. You can contact them directly to enquire about their membership and fees that will apply.
Alternatively you can take out a subscription directly to Pathways for 20.00 CAD this first year (three issues). Simply send the Canadian Lymphedema Framework (CLF) your request and they will reply with a subscription form with credit card information to complete for payment.
Lymphedema in Canada: A Qualitative Study to Help Develop a Clinical, Research, and Education Strategy: The aim of this study was to gather data from Canadian stakeholders to help construct a national strategy and agenda for lymphedema management as part of the Canadian Lymphedema Framework initiative. For a full copy of the study visit: www.current-oncology.com/index.php/oncology/article/view/787/
The CLF is led by two academic lymphedema experts and the heads of the two largest lymphedema patient advocacy groups in Canada: The Lymphedema Association of Ontario and the Lymphedema Association of Quebec.
In early 2010 provincial and national professional associations of physiotherapists, occupational therapists, registered massage therapists and nurses in oncology were invited to participate in an online survey to assess the current status of lymphedema care across Canada by the Canadian Lymphedema Framework - with the support of 3M Canada as well as Research Dimensions, a company commissioned to conduct the study.
The objectives of the research were to determine the level of lymphedema training and certification; identify the type of training which was taking place in hospital clinics and in the private sector; types of lymphedema treated; services and treatments offered. 239 respondents who replied to the survey came from eleven provinces and territories and came from following organizations:
- 47% licensed/registered massage therapists (RMTs)
- 29% physiotherapists (PTs)
- 19% nurses
- 5% occupational therapists and fitters
The study found that the there is a lack of standardized care with the majority of care provided in a private clinic setting where most health professionals have at least received 135 initial hours of specialized lymphedema training.
The cost of this treatment is expensive with patients paying out of their pockets, as there is often no provincial health coverage for it or the patient does not have employer or group health insurance to cover the costs.
Hospital-based specialized lymphedema programs are not wide-spread and exist sporadically in cancer clinics. Due to the lack of resources (less than one full-time person) in these clinics, the focus is teaching lymphedema management rather than providing hands on treatment.
For more information on the research study and updates on CLF activities visit: www.canadalymph.ca or send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Check out the video clip of the first Canadian Lymphedema Framework conference (linked through the picture below) which took place in the fall 2009 - guaranteed to inspire!
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Last revised Jan. 6, 2013.