Trials and tribulations: improving outcomes for adolescents and young adults with rare and low survival cancers

Adam Walczak, Pandora Patterson and David Thomas
Med J Aust 2018; 209 (8): . || doi: 10.5694/mja17.00976
Published online: 15 October 2018

Coordinated national action is needed to develop an evidence base and standards of care for young Australians with rare and low survival cancers

In November 2016, the Australian Senate established a select committee to explore the impact of funding models on rare and low survival cancer research. CanTeen Australia presented a submission to this inquiry which highlighted the impact of these cancers on adolescents and young adults (AYAs) and the systemic barriers to improving outcomes for patients with rare and low survival cancers. Drawing from that submission, we present the argument for a strategic national approach, including a national trial network, to facilitate cross-sectoral coordination and investment to improve outcomes for AYA patients with cancer and the broader Australian population affected by rare and low survival cancers.

  • Adam Walczak1
  • Pandora Patterson1,2
  • David Thomas3,4

  • 1 CanTeen Australia, Sydney, NSW
  • 2 Cancer Nursing Research Unit, University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW
  • 3 Kinghorn Cancer Centre, Garvan Institute of Medical Research, Sydney, NSW
  • 4 University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW



We thank Peter Orchard and Kimberley Allison for their contributions to the development of this manuscript.

Competing interests:

CanTeen Australia received Commonwealth Government funding to support the Australian Young Cancer Patient Clinical Trials Initiative.


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