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New Video Series Launch: “It’s Time: Conversations about Inclusive Cancer Screening”

New Video Series Launch: “It’s Time: Conversations about Inclusive Cancer Screening”

Monday, June 5, 2023

As Pride Month begins, Health Sciences North (HSN), the Shirley and Jim Fielding Northeast Cancer Centre and the North East Regional Cancer Program are proud to launch a new, animated video series to ensure everyone eligible for cancer screening feels welcome to participate, regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity.

“It’s Time: Conversations about Inclusive Cancer Screening” is an animated video series with a focus and objective of starting discussions about screening for transgender and non-binary patients and families looking to learn about accessing cancer screening in a safe and inclusive environment. Four videos were developed with the use of inclusive language and address the importance of regular screening for breast, colorectal, cervical and lung cancer.

“Advancing equity and inclusiveness in cancer screening has been delayed due to the pandemic. Historically, transgender people have been medically underserved and consideration for their needs has been overlooked. They face unique barriers when trying to access cancer screening services, such as seeing health care providers who may not have a full understanding of their needs or an absence of cancer screening guidelines specifically for transgender and non-binary people,” says Dr. Jason Sutherland, Regional Primary Care Lead for the North East Regional Cancer Program. “These barriers can contribute to transgender people being less up to-date with cancer screening. This video series is intended to bridge the knowledge gap for screening-eligible people, and provides new and specific recommendations in particular for transgender and non-binary people.”

“Fear of in-person screening and competing priorities has led to a decrease in the availability of primary care providers to have conversations about cancer screening with their patients. This video series highlights the importance of getting screened and increases the awareness and understanding of the services and programs available to the public, leading to better outcomes for individuals, their communities, and the healthcare system in the North East, ” says Stephanie Winn, Administrative Director for the Shirley and Jim Fielding Northeast Cancer Centre.

Darlyn Hansen, a member of HSN’s Patient and Family Advisory Council and transfeminine person, was involved throughout the development of this series. 

“My wife and I face numerous barriers and blockages in receiving the services we need. We live in a different world and time, and the healthcare system needs to catch up,” says Hansen. “There is a lack of awareness about recommendations for cancer screening that need to be addressed because early detection is so important. This video series is a great reminder that everyone has a risk of getting cancer and that people should advocate for themselves and get screened as soon as they become eligible.”

“As one of HSN’s key goals is to be socially accountable and to meet the needs of diverse populations, we are committed to inclusivity and addressing the priority health concerns and health equity gaps for Northerners,” says Natalie Aubin, Regional Vice-President, Cancer Care and Vice-President for Social Accountability. “This includes providing a clear understanding of eligibility and up-to-date cancer screening guidelines for our patients. It also means making this information accessible, which is why we have made it a priority to provide this education virtually and delivered by a cancer-screening expert. Through this video series, we have the opportunity to reach a larger audience and increase awareness about our cancer screening program across the northeast.”

The North East Regional Cancer Program screening team works with health care providers and screening sites across the entire northeast region. This series has been shared with various primary care providers and health care organizations, and is available on the HSN website. To learn more, visit

Breast Screening

Cervical screening


Colorectal screening

Lung screening