Wednesday 23 September 2009

Finding Out About DES By Chance?

Since 2004 DES Action Australia-NSW has organised DES Awareness Weeks June 1-7 on the NSW Health Calendar. These events have only been possible with the practical and financial assistance of members and associates. With numerous media articles about DES published nationally, the response from many DES exposed people who chance upon these articles has been absolute anger and distress. This has been as a consequence of NOT having been directly informed of the dangers of DES previously via government public health programs. For these individuals their health, and indeed, possibly their lives have unnecessarily been jeopardised through not knowing their special cancer preventive health care.

For many people, finding out about DES is like finding the last piece of a puzzle in their health problems. This is especially so, when they are the only sibling in their family exposed to DES and are alone experiencing many of tell-tale signs of DES exposure, eg, recurrent miscarriages, ectopic pregnancies.

One woman reported to us having been diagnosed with the DES associated cancer type at a young age in the 1980s and had NEVER been asked by any health care provider about the possibility of her exposure. Stories along these lines are never ending to us year after year.

Finding out about DES by chance is NOT good enough! Many voices need to be heard in the face of government opinion that “DES information could create unnecessary anxieties for women who may not know if they have been DES exposed.”

You can help change this horrendous situation for DES exposed Australians by writing to:

The Hon Nicola Roxon MP, Minister for Health and Ageing, MG 50, Parliament House, Canberra ACT 2600 Email:


The Hon Peter Dutton MP, Shadow Minister for Health and Ageing, House of Representatives, Parliament House, Canberra ACT 2600 Email:

Let these politicians know that people need to be directly informed about DES in public health programs and certainly let them know your circumstance if you only found out about DES by chance.

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