All in the Family: Talking to Siblings about Childhood Cancer


Presentation Description: 
When a child is diagnosed with cancer, the focus automatically tends to fall on that child and how their disease will affect them.  People rarely think about how the disease will affect their entire family, especially any siblings they may have.  Whether the sibling is older or younger, at the hospital every day or away at school, having a sibling with cancer will inevitably not only change the dynamic with their brother/sister, but the family as a whole.  This presentation looked at the disease through a less heard of, but equally important point of view: the sibling. The panel included the voices of an older brother, a younger sister, and a summary of relevant research presented by a health care professional.

Norma D’Agostino, Ph.D., C.Psych.
Clinical Health Psychologist, University Health Network
Lecturer, Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto

Jenna Shamata, BAH
Sibling of a childhood cancer survivor

Kevin Wang, BHSc, MD/PhD Candidate
Hospital for Sick Children
University of Toronto
Sibling of a childhood cancer survivor

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