Rare Cancers Australia welcomes the recommendations made
last week by the Senate Community Affairs References Committee into the Inquiry
on the Availability and Accessibility of Diagnostic Imaging Equipment around
Diagnostic imaging is a critical part of the cancer journey,
with late or inaccurate diagnosis contributing to poorer outcomes for patients,
and a greater cost burden on the healthcare system. Our submission to the
inquiry, with contributions from our supporters and rare cancer community, focussed on geographical and financial
inequities, asserting that "timely access to diagnostic imaging should not
be determined by someone’s bank balance or postcode."
We also highlighted the need for greater subsidisation for
alternative, yet still effective, diagnostic imaging where radiation emitting
imaging is deemed unsafe or unsuitable. A link to our full submission the
Committee is below.
We were disappointed that the terms of reference did not
fully address genomic technology as it relates to diagnostic imaging. Screening
for those with high genetic cancer risk has been proven effective at improving
outcomes for patients and the cost on the health system, and should therefore
be seen as a benefit rather than a cost. Although the committee was unable to
make recommendations with regard to this critical area, we urge policymakers to
review the health system’s ability to harness genomic technology in screening.
Finally, RCA would like to thank Prof. David Thomas at the
Garvan Institute of Medical Research for his contribution to our submission,
and also the committee members for their work on the recommendations, including
Rachel Siewert, Slade Brockman, Jonathon Duniam, Kristina Keneally, Louise
Pratt, Murray Watt.