KELOWNA - Cancer patients living in the Southern Interior of B.C. will have access to a new integrative cancer care service that combines the broader concepts of health with standard therapies.
An integrative approach to cancer care engages patients in their own health and supports them through healthful nutrition, exercise and stress management programs.
The InspireHealth Southern Interior centre in Kelowna will offer the same integrative treatments and services as the Victoria InspireHealth centre, which opened in October 2011. The centres are part of the June 2011 expansion announcement in Vancouver, which also includes plans for future centres in Abbotsford and Prince George. The virtual program expansion in Vancouver was launched in November 2011, to support rural and remote communities.
InspireHealth has operated a Vancouver centre since 1997 and is expanding its services in British Columbia. It helps to improve cancer care and helps patients learn how to support their own health and recovery. Integrative cancer care is a combination of diet, activity and stress management with standard cancer treatments to promote an overall healthier lifestyle that optimizes recovery and survival. Integrative care empowers patients to be active participants in their recovery and encourages self-responsibility and engagement in health to create healthier families and communities.
The Provincial Health Services Authority has provided one-time, startup funding totalling $2.5 million for the five centres. An additional annual $2.5 million from the Ministry of Health will fund physicians and allied health-care professionals.
InspireHealth is funded through a mix of physician salaries, patient-pay-membership fees and private donations. There is no charge for access to InspireHealth's physicians and nurse practitioners.
Greater access to integrative cancer care is part of Healthy Families BC, which supports British Columbians to manage their own health, reduce chronic disease and ensure that pregnancy and support programs target the province's most vulnerable families. Additionally, the strategy will continue to focus on healthy eating initiatives, to help make the healthier choice the easier choice.
Steve Thomson, Kelowna-Mission MLA, on behalf of Michael de Jong, Minister of Health -
"Our government's vision is for a cancer-free society, and programs like InspireHealth support this vision. Unfortunately, many British Columbians have been affected by cancer in some way. Statistics show one-in-three will develop some form of cancer in their lifetime. Because of this, we need to provide care, support and comfort for our families and friends facing stressful times."
Dr. Hal Gunn, co-founder and CEO of InspireHealth -
"Being diagnosed with cancer is challenging, but it can provide a window of opportunity for significant lifestyle changes. InspireHealth provides integrative care, support and engages patients, so that the fear of cancer is transformed into an inspired journey of health and well-being."
- The Southern Interior centre is located at Towne Centre Mall, second floor, 565 Bernard Ave., Kelowna.
- Access to InspireHealth's physicians and nurse practitioners is free.
- For individuals who choose to fully engage in InspireHealth's model of care, InspireHealth offers a membership program that includes core health classes (e.g., nutrition, exercise, yoga, meditation, support groups), as well as a two-day LIFE program at $445 for the first year and $95 for annual renewals.
- The fee is waived for patients on Medical Service Plan Premium Assistance.
- New cancer diagnoses in British Columbia are expected to grow to more than 34,000 cases by 2025, up 40 per cent from 24,000 in 2012.
- The most common cancers for women in British Columbia are breast, lung and colorectal.
- The most common cancers for men in British Columbia are prostate, lung and colorectal.
- Despite the statistics, British Columbia has some of the most favourable cancer outcomes in North America.
- According to the Canadian Cancer Society's 2012 Canadian Cancer Statistics report, B.C. men and women have the lowest overall mortality rates and incidence rates for all cancers in Canada.
Visit InspireHealth at: www.inspirehealth.ca
Visit Healthy Families BC at: www.healthyfamiliesbc.ca
Manager of Media Relations
Ministry of Health