The story behind Brian Lenihan, TV3 and me
The real scandal last week was that most patients get no treatment for an often fatal illness, writes John Crown
I wish to clarify the circumstances of my interview regarding pancreatic carcinoma, an interview which TV3 News broadcast after they had made the announcement that Finance Minister Brian Lenihan had been diagnosed with this condition.
In the first instance let me offer my best wishes to Mr Lenihan for a successful outcome to his treatment. If, as has been reported, he is being treated in the Mater Private Hospital for pancreatic cancer, then he will have access to the expertise of first-class, internationally reputed oncologists, nurses and surgeons.
TV3 contacted me on December 26 to tell me that they were going to report that a politician had been diagnosed with cancer and asked if I would be free to comment. I told them that I would not comment on the illness of any individual, but might consider doing an information piece about the type of cancer in question. The disclosure that a well-known figure has been diagnosed with cancer can increase public awareness, encourage people to avoid risk factors specific to the disease, and highlight the need for greater investment in research and in treatment.