IOSH is supporting a national virtual event being held to raise awareness about mesothelioma, the asbestos-related cancer, on Action Mesothelioma Day.
The event, on 3 July 2020, is organised by the UK Mesothelioma Alliance (UKMA).
It will share stories from mesothelioma patients, information on nursing support, and presentations on clinical trials and preventing exposure to asbestos. Action Mesothelioma Day will commence at 10.40am to 12pm (BST) and will observe a one-minute silence at 11am.
Each year, in the UK, around 2,500 people are diagnosed with mesothelioma. UKMA was established to bring together mesothelioma stakeholders as one voice to raise awareness of this disease.
IOSH is a co-opted member of the Alliance and supports it by raising awareness through its No Time to Lose – working together to beat occupational cancer campaign.
IOSH Vice-President Dr David Gold will present the campaign at the event and explain how to prevent exposure to asbestos at work. He said:
“Asbestos is the biggest cause of occupational cancer worldwide. Even though asbestos is banned in Britain, thousands of tonnes of asbestos can still be found in domestic and commercial buildings, industrial plant and equipment.
“As well as mesothelioma, exposure to asbestos causes diseases including pleural plaques, asbestosis and lung cancer. Deaths from asbestos typically occur 20 to 40 years following exposure.
“During my presentation, I will explain the eight steps to managing asbestos, showcase our free No Time to Lose resources to help raise awareness of the issue in your workplace, and provide information on how you can support the campaign.
“By working together, we can all do our bit to help raise awareness of mesothelioma and how to prevent this deadly disease on Action Mesothelioma Day.”
David will be joined by a variety of speakers including Dawn McKinley, UKMA Chair; Sarah Morgan, Mesothelioma Clinical Nurse Specialist; Mavis Nye from the Mavis Nye Foundation; Professor Sanjay Popat, Consultant Thoracic Medical Oncologist at the Royal Marsden Hospital and Professor of Thoracic Oncology at the Institute of Cancer Research; and Paul Cook from Erase Meso.
Dawn McKinley, UKMA Chair, said:
“On the first virtual Action Mesothelioma Day we invite families, patients, carers and supporters to come together to recognise and remember all those who have been affected by mesothelioma and to raise awareness about the impact that asbestos can have.
“Working in partnership with asbestos support groups and other organisations including IOSH, we’re delighted to host an event with a key message of hope, prevention and reassurance during these challenging times.”