New McGrath Foundation Breast Care Nurse Karen Linich comes to work every day with one goal– to make the day easier for the patients she supports.
Karen comes to the role after three years as a clinical nurse at BreastScreen Mackay supporting women re-called for further investigation after a mammogram.
Before this she worked at NSW BreastScreen for nine years where she also provided supportive care.
McGrath Breast Care Nurses are registered nurses specially trained to manage the care of people with breast cancer throughout the course of their treatment.
They are a principal liaison between the individual and the specialists who coordinate their treatment – whether it be early or metastatic breast cancer.
“I know I can’t change a diagnosis or prognosis but if I can make today a little easier to bear, that brings me a great deal of personal and professional satisfaction,” Karen said.
McGrath Breast Care Nurses also play an important advocacy role as well as helping to clarify technical or complicated information that may not be easily understood.
Most importantly, McGrath Breast Care Nurses offer vital emotional support for people with breast cancer and their families, during what can be a very difficult time.
“For me women are a valuable asset to community and are sometimes under we are undervalued or underestimated so my role is about helping us as women to be all we can be,” she said.
Karen said there was no typical day in her job.
“I could be there when they get a diagnosis or be an ear on phone when they’ve had a bad day, or helping them understand their condition and providing links to other services.”
Karen said breast care had always been her passion.
“Breasts are a very personal part of our body and I think it’s important we care for one another in a nurturing way to help women to get the best out of their life/
“Breasts are a nurturing part of your body, it part of who you are as a woman, part of your sexuality, so it’s a very involved area.”