Recognizing Thyroid Cancer Awareness in the Netherlands

Barbara Diana | September 25, 2013

Written with contributions by Gisela Linthorst, Manager of Patient Care, Genzyme Netherlands.

This month, thyroid cancer patients, advocates, and organizations in more than 96 countries will participate in various activities to honor International Thyroid Cancer Awareness month, which was founded by the Thyroid Cancer Survivors’ Association (ThyCa). Specific activities also took place on Thyroid Cancer Awareness Day on September 24th. Thyroid Cancer Awareness month promotes thyroid cancer awareness for early detection, as well as care based on expert standards, and increased research to achieve cures for all thyroid cancers.

In honor of International Thyroid Cancer Awareness month, we wanted to share with you several activities from the Netherlands. First, the Dutch Thyroid Cancer Patient Association (Schildklier Organisaties Nederland - SON) and Genzyme Netherlands collaborated to produce an inspiring book called “Faces Behind Thyroid Cancer” featuring 18 Thyroid Cancer survivor stories. The purpose of the book is to help create awareness about Thyroid Cancer and the real experiences of those affected by it. It includes compelling personal stories of each individual’s diagnosis and the subsequent impact the diagnosis and treatment has had on their careers, family and loved ones. The reaction to the book from patients and physicians has thus far been incredibly enthusiastic. 

Another event that recently was held was on September 9th, when the Dutch patient organisation SON sounded the pistol at the start of the 1st Thyroid Cancer Awareness Run. The race was organised by Genzyme in collaboration with the European Thyroid Association (ETA) in Leiden, a city not far from Amsterdam. Approximately 100 runners ran 3 kilometers (1.8 miles) around the centre of Leiden to raise awareness for Thyroid Cancer. The event was fun but more importantly helped to create attention around Thyroid Cancer in the Leiden community. We hope all the Thyroid Cancer Advocacy Groups globally are able to celebrate their accomplishments this month while helping to raise awareness about this rare disease.


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