What does superannuation have to do with blood cancer?
In early April, a team of Vision Super staff took part in the Murray to Moyne charity bike ride for the second year running. Including seven riders, three support crew and backed by spirited Vision Super staff, this year the team raised almost $35,000 to support blood cancer research.
Vision Super is partnering with Snowdome and Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, providing $300,000 to support genetic testing of blood cancer patients in order to tailor medicines to individual patients. This personalised treatment approach is more effective than conventional blood cancer treatments.
Vision Super CEO Stephen Rowe said the fund’s involvement with the Snowdome Foundation was related to the insurance function of the super fund.
“Vision Super staff processing insurance claims noticed that many of the claims were cancer-related,” Stephen Rowe said.
“In fact, about a quarter of Vision’s total and permanent disability claims are cancer-related and in almost half of paid life insurance claims where a member has passed away, the death was caused by cancer.
“We realised this was something affecting our members, and we were motivated to do something about it.”
Peter Mac’s Clinical and Laboratory Haematologist and Vision Super-Snowdome Foundation Fellow, Dr Piers Blombery, leads the personalised treatment program.
“This testing is at the core of the emerging field of ‘personalised medicine’ for blood cancers. It is particularly important for patients with blood cancers who have a poor response or who relapse much sooner than would be expected after conventional treatment,” Dr Blombery said.
“For those patients, this service can save lives or dramatically improve treatment outcomes, and so we are very grateful to Vision Super and the Snowdome Foundation for their support.”
All of the funds raised by Vision Super from this year’s ride will go to the Snowdome Foundation.
Vision Super’s staff rode 90 km from Hamilton to Port Fairy on 2 April.