True NTH, led by the Movember Foundation, is the largest ever global investment in improving life for men with prostate cancer. More than 80 members of the programme met in Cairns last August to discuss their progress. Here's a snapshot of what happened...
In August 2015, one year after TrueNTH was established, over 80 members of the programme met in Cairns, Australia, to report on the progress of their projects and work together to steer future work improving care for men with prostate cancer.
The TrueNTH programme include a diverse range of projects globally, so to help focus the research being done and enable groups working on similar projects to share their expertise, themed working groups were established:
The conference was a unique opportunity for experts from across the world to share their collective knowledge and compare the outcome of their projects. Thirteen representatives from TrueNTH projects in the UK, managed by Prostate Cancer UK, attended the conference.
One of these representatives was Professor of Continence Technology at University of Southampton, Mandy Fader, who leads the continence management programme in the UK.
The conference gave Mandy the opportunity to discuss challenges in continence management with fellow experts in the subject from across the world.
She says: "We want to make sure that men who have bladder or bowel leakage have access to treatments, information, advice and products so that they can confidently live their lives to the full where ever they are in the world."
The conference was also an opportunity for volunteers who advise UK-based projects to see how their influence affects the decisions made by those running them. As patient advocates and Prostate Cancer UK volunteers, men like John Marshall and John Heyworth ensure the needs of patients and their families are the driving force behind the direction of the projects.
John Marshall says: “I feel privileged to have taken part and met such great and talented people committed to stopping men dying of prostate cancer. It’s satisfying to know that our views were listened to and used by some of the top researchers of our disease in the world.”
John Heyworth stressed the important role that patients, clinicians and commissioners have in approach.
He said: "Prostate Cancer UK and the Movember Foundation recognise the importance patients with lived experience can add to the work of the TrueNTH teams. Seeing the progress made between the Manchester global meeting last year and the meeting in Cairns this year gives me confidence we will have a significantly improved care pathway for prostate cancer patients in the near future. The sooner we can achieve this, the better. We now need to inform and get buy in from a wider range of clinicians and fund holders."
The Cairns conference was an important event in the progress of the TrueNTH programme. By inviting specialists from across the globe to share their learnings and use their collective knowledge to guide their work, we hope to speed up the improvements we can make in prostate cancer care.
To find out more about True NTH, visit prostatecanceruk.org/truenth.