Macmillan and Aneurin Bevan Health Board working together on cancer support group

A £300,000 pilot scheme to support cancer survivors in Gwent has been launched.

Macmillan Cancer Support has partnered up with Aneurin Bevan Health Board to work on the two-year pilot to support people in Gwent who have finished treatment for breast or prostate cancer.

The charity has funded five roles in Caerphilly north and Newport west, who will work alongside colleagues in the Royal Gwent Hospital, Newport, designed to help those who have survived cancer manage the physical, social and psychological needs following treatment.

The physical needs can include infertility, impotence and chronic fatigue, while the psychological and social needs can include feeling anxious, depressed or a loss of confidence.

The pilot will test ways of supporting people to live independently after treatment and how to improve their quality of life.

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.

“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.”

The pilot is one of 16 across the UK designed to fill gaps in services so as to deliver the best care for people living with and beyond cancer.

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."

To find out more, call 0300 1000 200 or visit www.macmillan.org.uk/fundraising

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