A devastated mother, Andrea Brady has started a petition to ‘Improve the awareness and diagnosis of cancer in young adults.’ With over 61,000 signatures, Andrea is reaching out to more people to help make vital changes to young adults lives.
Jessica, Andrea’s daughter lost her life to stage 4 adenocarcinoma on the 20th of December 2020, aged just 27 years. Andrea said “She had been ill for 6 months, but the spring/summer lockdown meant face to face consultations with her GP were restricted and numerous antibiotics were prescribed, even in the absence of a physical examination. Jessica was told for months she was suffering from Long Covid despite two negative coronavirus tests.“
It wasn’t until 6 days prior to her death that the family were told she had cancer which had spread though out her body, including her spine, liver, stomach, lungs and lymph nodes. Andrea said “we were devastated, our world was shattered” due to Jessica needing high dependency oxygen she was never able to return home.
Since Jessica’s death the family have worked hard to to shine the light on the effects of late diagnosis and the impact the covid-19 restrictions have had on cancer patients. Within Andrea’s petition she stated that “Adults aged 25-49 contribute around a tenth of all new cancer cases, with double the incidence in females than males.” She went on to say that this age group are not prioritised and often ignored without giving life saving treatment.
Andrea describes the 25-49 age bracket to be the “forgotten generations” , “too old for their diagnosis to be truly shocking and too young to be deemed at serious risk.” She added “Covid is undoubtedly exacerbating the situation.”
Within the petition, which can be shared HERE, Andrea wrote;
This government must ensure no more young lives are tragically and unnecessarily lost.
- Funding must be ring-fenced to allow GP’s to respond with utmost urgency in referring ALL patients.
- Steps must be taken to facilitate an increase in safe face to face consultations.
- Once referred, hospitals require more specialist staff and equipment to make the immediate and necessary diagnosis.
- Campaigns are essential to increase awareness of cancer in people in their 20’s, 30’s and 40’s.
Dealing with the real risk of Covid should not create a higher risk of cancer death in our younger generations. Action must be taken
Sharing across social media platforms, the petition has already touched the likes of Matt Hancock and comedian, Sue Perkins, who had the pleasure of meeting Jess.
Alongside the petition Andrea and her family who describe Jess as “a beautiful person inside and out, who was passionate about raising awareness” are doing just that by raising money for four charities, ‘4 Jess’. After their unexpected journey with Jess highlighted the need for more support, funding, and research.
The charities they are raising funds for are ;
1.CUP (cancer of unknown primary) research at University College London Hospitals.
2.Acute Medical Unit at The Lister Hospital. Where Jess was treated on AMU2 for 3 ½ weeks.
3. Cancer Research UK. Which the family said is “vital for continued funding for research and provision of information, as a family, we have benefitted from some wonderful support following the loss of Jess.”
4. CLIC Sargent, a charity who supports young people with cancer and their families
To help the family reach their target of £12,000 to facilitate continued cancer research and provide support for young adult cancer patients. Click HERE