Anna Hrynko is 47 and grew up in Melbourne. Her mother and two great Aunts all passed away from breast cancer. In 2012 Anna was diagnosed with an aggressive breast cancer in one breast and then had a mastectomy, axillary lymph node clearance, chemotherapy, radiotherapy and a targeted drug by a port a cath iv. Anna had genetic testing because of her strong family history. Whilst the results were inconclusive, she decided to have all the prophylactic surgery, oophorectomy and mastectomy of the other breast. Anna then had a full breast reconstruction, which was a very challenging time. A month later Anna was back in hospital having half her thyroid removed as it was suspicious. Fortunately it was all clear. Anna has been through the works, with all her treatments and nine operations in four years. Anna remembers her GP saying “Cancer is aggressive and you need to treat it aggressively”. Anna co-facilitates a support group for young women with breast cancer. Last year she completed two fun runs the 8km Mother’s Day Classic and 14km City to Surf. It was a huge challenge & achievement to celebrate her 5 year Anniversary. Anna manages her fear of recurrence by keeping her immune system strong, eating a well-balanced diet, exercising regularly, managing her stress and being grateful.
Kim Hobbs holds a Masters degree in Social Work and has a long career in oncology social work; currently working at Westmead Hospital in the Department of Gynaecological Oncology. Building upon a solid base of clinical care, Kim advocates for improved psychosocial support services for all people with cancer and their families, friends and caregivers. She believes that psychosocial care should be an integral component of comprehensive cancer care for throughout treatment and recovery. Kim has been involved in the development of educational resources for both clinicians and consumers.