More than 50,000 Australians experiencing breast cancer and their families have now been supported by McGrath Breast Care Nurses, but demand continues to outstrip supply, the McGrath Foundation announced today.
With five-year survival rates for breast cancer now at 90 per cent, and the number of people living with a previous breast cancer diagnosis growing from 159,235 in 2008 to a projected 209,200 in 2017,  Australia has a critical gap in breast care nursing services which is set to widen by 38 per cent in the next five years. 
To address this urgent need, McGrath Foundation CEO Petra Buchanan confirmed that in 2017 an additional seven new McGrath Breast Care Nurses will join the 110 nurses already located around the country.
‘A growing need for specialist breast care nurses underpins our continued commitment to provide the free service of McGrath Breast Care Nurses in communities right across Australia, as well as increasing breast health understanding and awareness,’ Ms Buchanan said.
These new McGrath Breast Care Nurse positions will be located in Victoria, NSW, Queensland and South Australia.
‘We are working closely with the local area health services in each state to place these new nurse positions in areas of greatest need. On average each McGrath Breast Care Nurse supports 100 patients and their families at any given time,’ she continued.
In its short 11 year history, the foundation, started with Jane and Glenn McGrath’s very public experience with breast cancer, has become one of Australia’s most recognised and respected charities, known for its innovative approach and personal touch.
In order to close the gap in service, the McGrath Foundation has set in place a comprehensive five year plan to raise funds to continue to place new nurses. Embracing a business-savvy and start-up mentality that is digitally focused and technology driven, the McGrath Foundation has grown its funded nursing workforce by 36 per cent since 2014.
 Australian Institute of Health & Welfare (2012). Breast Cancer in Australia ‘ an overview
 Australian Healthcare & Hospitals Association (2015). Keeping abreast of future need: a report into the growing demand for breast care nurses. Available at www.mcgrathfoundation.com.au/FutureNeeds.aspx