Aussie cricket legend launches lifesaving campaign
AS Tasmanians went into lockdown in March, Chigwell woman Michelle Fish was also dealing with the news that her breast cancer had progressed to stage four.
The 51-year-old was first diagnosed in December 2018 and after almost 18 months of treatment, the cancer returned and she remained in self-isolation.
The extra pressure of trying to survive a treatable but not curable cancer was alleviated by having a McGrath breast care nurse, Paula Lagerewskij.
"When I was first diagnosed, I wanted to know how much time I'd have left, but no one knows just yet," Mrs Fish said.
"Treatment is all about dealing with side effects and trying to slow the progression of my cancer and Paula is a critical part of my medical team who are all helping me live well with cancer."
Each year in Tasmania, 400 people are diagnosed with breast cancer and Mrs Lagerewskij is one of four McGrath breast care nurses in the state.
She said during the pandemic, the free service had seen a big focus on psychological support for patients.
The McGrath Foundation's 2020 national community fundraising campaign, Pink Stumps Day campaign was launched at the Lindisfarne Cricket Club on Tuesday by former Australian cricketer Peter Siddle.
Pink Stumps Day is a way for cricket teams, schools and workplaces to fundraise specifically for breast care nurses.
Teams can play on a day of their choosing during the cricket season.
Siddle said it was an honour to be chosen to be this year's event ambassador and the fundraising target had been set at $500,000.
"I spoke to Glenn [McGrath] last night and fingers crossed the pink test can go ahead and we can raise that target," he said.
"Obviously we're all going through some tough times, but the sad thing is cancer doesn't stop for a pandemic."
Register your event at PinkStumpsDay.com.au
Originally published as Aussie cricket legend launches lifesaving campaign in Hobart