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Macmillan invests £300,000 to support cancer patients

Published in News at 16:48, Friday June 14th, 2013.

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Macmillan Cancer Support has invested £300,000 in a pilot scheme to support people recovering from breast and prostate cancer.

The charity has funded five roles for two years in partnership with Aneurin Bevan Health Board to help people in the Caerphilly and Newport areas.

The pilot aims to test new ways of supporting people to live independently following treatment and to improve quality of life. Macmillan has said many people who have finished cancer treatment need support to manage often complex physical, psychological and social needs.

Carlene Jones has been appointed as the Macmillan Complex Case Manager, Paula Williams as the Macmillan Support Worker and Joanne Evans as the Macmillan Community Care Nurse, all of whom are based in Caerphilly.

In Newport, Emma Jones and Lisa Lloyd have been appointed as Macmillan Primary Care Nurses, based in GP practices.

All five professionals work alongside colleagues in the Royal Gwent Hospital and people can be referred to them for support by their GPs.
The pilot is one of 16 across the UK – two of which are in Wales – designed to fill gaps in services to deliver the best care for people living with and beyond cancer.

It aims for people to see the right person with the right skills and knowledge at the right time to ensure their individual needs are met in the community as well as in hospital.

Susan Morris, General Manager for Macmillan Cancer Support in Wales, said: “Breast and prostate cancer are the two most common cancers in the UK and, fortunately, we know that more and more people are surviving both.

“It is excellent news that so many people are living longer following a cancer diagnosis, but people tell us that they need support to manage the physical side effects from their treatment and the psychological and social consequences of their diagnosis, which can include feeling depressed or anxious.

“Many people also tell us that the period following treatment can be as difficult to cope with as when they are undergoing treatment.

“Macmillan has invested £300,000 in this pilot project to give people who have finished treatment for both types of cancer individually tailored care which enables them to live well for longer.

“This pilot will allow us to test new ways to provide support for people living beyond a cancer diagnosis, which could ultimately lead towards improving care for people affected by cancer across Wales.”

Helen Dodoo, Directorate Manager, Palliative Care and Care of the Elderly, for Aneurin Bevan Health Board, said: “This pilot presents us with a great opportunity to work in partnership with Macmillan to test out new nursing roles in community and primary care settings to support people who have completed their hospital cancer treatment, but often need some on-going support which can vary between each individual.

“It will enable our staff to provide care which specifically meets the need of each person with the overall aim of empowering people to feel more confident about managing their own health needs.

“It will also enable us to learn about the best ways to support people who are living with and beyond cancer in Gwent to develop sustainable changes within our existing services.

“One such initiative commences in June where a number of practice nurses from Gwent are participating in the Macmillan practice nurse education course to enable them to enhance their skills and knowledge to support cancer survivors who are part of their GP practice.”

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