Minister of Health Tyler Shandro issued the following statement on Rare Disease Day:
“Each year, on the last day in February, we recognize Rare Disease Day – an important day for many families. About one in 12 Canadians are affected by a rare disease and two-thirds of those affected are children.
“It can take months or even years to reach diagnosis of a rare disease. Following diagnosis, the next steps often are multiple and exhausting: specialist appointments, surgeries and procedures accompanied by high levels of anxiety and heartache for the affected family.
“We are blessed in Alberta with an outstanding medical system with highly trained specialists. Their commitment and compassion to care for patients with rare diseases helps families cope with the burden of diagnosis and improves lives.
“My thanks and appreciation go to Alberta’s medical researchers and practitioners who help improve the quality of life for many people with rare diseases – here and around the world. In turn, they have learned from others to make a better life for all.”