Editor’s note: It’s Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month, and our focus is “Demand Better. For Patients. For Survival.” Each week, we’re bringing you conversations with survivors, families, volunteers, researchers, advocates and others fighting the world’s toughest cancer. We’re asking them why they Demand Better, and how they’re doing it. Today, Jennifer Baker, a 10-year pancreatic cancer survivor from Arkansas, shares her thoughts. She was diagnosed at only 29 years old.
Jennifer, for whom do you Demand Better?
I Demand Better for everyone involved in this fight. The doctors and pancreatic cancer researchers working to save lives. The people who will be diagnosed this year. The friends I will lose this year.
Why do you Demand Better?
Quite simply, it’s because I know how hard the fight was…and still is.
What are you personally doing to Demand Better in the fight against the world’s toughest cancer?
I live every day telling everyone I know about pancreatic cancer. I make phone calls and send emails. I tell the world we cannot stop, we must keep working to make progress.
What does Demand Better mean to you?
Not forgetting those we’ve lost, fighting for those who will be diagnosed and helping those currently fighting, get better. We are worth it, our loved ones are worth it and the doctors and researchers are worth it.
Why should people be aware of pancreatic cancer risk factors?
The way to save lives is to educate people about the disease. That’s why everyone should know the risk factors and symptoms, so people know what to look for and hopefully get an earlier diagnosis. I was lucky – my cancer was caught early. I kept pushing for someone to listen to me. Early detection is key to surviving this.
What three words come to mind when you picture a world in which there is an early detection test for pancreatic cancer?
We did it!
Join us in fighting the world’s toughest cancer. Visit pancan.org/demandbetter to learn more about how you can Demand Better during Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month and beyond.