Macmillan invests £500, 000 on new cancer services in borough

Pic: James McCauley

Two new services are being launched in Tower Hamlets to help cancer patients receive support at home and in the community.

Macmillan Cancer Support, in partnership with Tower Hamlets Council, East London Foundation Trust and Age UK East London, are investing £590,000 in two new services: the Macmillan Cancer Care Navigators and Take Home and Settle Cancer Support Service.

Combined, these will allow cancer patients experiencing isolation to receive the support they need.

Sandra Docking from Bow helped design the services after receiving cancer treatment for stage 3 breast cancer in 2013.

“If you’ve been in hospital for more than a couple of weeks, it’s hard to adjust to being home,” Docking told ELL.

She said that Macmillan Cancer Care Navigators will prove “particularly useful”,  helping vulnerable patients connect with support networks and groups they might have been unaware of.

Sandra Docking, who helped design the new services. Pic: Macmillan Cancer Support

“It’s aimed particularly at those who are worried about how they will cope with the immediate consequences of cancer treatment and may have a limited support network of family and friends.”

While Docking helped with the creation of the services, additional feedback and guidance was gathered in focus groups.

These new services will aim to provide cancer patients in Tower Hamlets with a greater quality of home life.

Dr Tania Anastasiadis, a GP Cancer Lead in Tower Hamlets, said in a press release: “Many of our cancer patients are dealing with complex social and medical issues. The systems around them are often hard to navigate… these new services will undoubtedly help both patients and teams to deliver better care keeping the patients’ needs at the very centre.”

For those living with cancer in Tower Hamlets, referrals to these services can be made by local GPs, cancer nurses, and Macmillan Information and Support specialists.

The Macmillan Cancer Support line is open 7-days a week from 8am – 8pm on 0808 808 00 00.

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