New project aims to improve lives and transform treatment of cancer patients

A new project is looking to transform services for people living with cancer in Lincolnshire,

The Living With and Beyond Cancer programme has been launched by NHS Lincolnshire West Clinical Commissioning Group and is funded by Macmillan Cancer Support.

Bosses say the aim is to improve support and information services in hospitals, ensure needed services are available in the community and make reliable sources of information visible at a variety of locations including hospitals, workplaces and GP surgeries.

Programme leader Kathie Longbone, said she was excited about the possibilities.

Kathie Longbone EMN-171008-101106001

She said: “This time last year, we started out with the ambition of wanting to transform the way people received the life changing news of a cancer diagnosis and how they were supported through their cancer journey and beyond.

“We want to make sure services are in place for patients and their families to give them the kind of support that they need outside of their diagnosis and treatment, that reliable information is readily available at a variety of locations and from several sources and that all medical records and treatment history is shared appropriately and promptly between those in acute care and primary care.”

The programme has been developed by speaking to more than 400 people across Lincolnshire and will carry out three projects over the next two years.

The first two, one of which will start in Gainsborough, will include a Recovery Package being made available in hospitals and acute care.

Kathie Longbone EMN-171008-101106001

Bosses say this will involve ‘a holistic needs assessment’ to identify the needs of a patient, sending full treatment summaries to the patient’s GP and making sure the patient is fully aware of what follow up appointments will involve.

The final project will work on making sure reliable sources of information are always available for cancer patients.

Ms Longbone said that while it is widely known there are brilliant staff and support services already out there for cancer patients, they face the same problems that the whole NHS is facing such as stretched resources.