A range of inequalities exist in different aspects of cancer care, including according to a person’s socio economic status, age, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, race, religion and disability. This award is given to the individual or team who have done the most to identify, raise awareness of and tackle cancer inequalities.
Development and implementation of an anticipatory care calendar for people with learning disabilities or dementia
Cheshire and Merseyside Clinical Networks, Merseyside and Cheshire Cancer Network
The Anticipatory Care Calendar (ACC) is a simple tool to improve daily surveillance of health. It overcomes barriers that can prevent people with learning disabilities and dementia accessing health services. The ACC is designed to alert staff to health changes and prompts appropriate access to Primary Care.
People living with a learning disability have spent decades being excluded from mainstream society and remain almost invisible in our communities, workplaces and in family life. As a result, the health of people with a learning disability or dementia is significantly poorer than that of the general population.
Despite the many reports and policy recommendations, little has been done to address the social exclusion of these groups, and their health and wellbeing continues to decline. This ACC tool maps changes and patterns relating to health and behaviour over a whole month. ACC helps healthcare professionals to see the relationship between health domains such as pain, eating, drinking, elimination, sleeping etc. rather than one health issue or behaviour in isolation. The tool prompts staff to act on changes and helps them to visualise changes over time.
The tool is sustainable and is supported by a website and an educational package facilitated by Edge Hill University. The ACC is saving lives and improving care. It has also changed the way social care staff view health. They now see it as their responsibility too.
Development of the Hair Loss Support Service
The Robert Ogden Macmillan Centre, St James’s University Hospital
The Robert Ogden Macmillan Centre has been involved in a variety of projects to improve Hair Loss Support Services for cancer patients at Leeds Cancer Centre.
Training of hair loss support staff and a focus group undertaken with the Black Health Initiative led to improved acceptability of the wig service in this community.
The centre worked very closely with a local wig supplier to increase the range of wigs on offer under the NHS scheme, resulting in better choice for patients.
An electronic catalogue has been developed specifically for the Hair Loss Support Service at Leeds Cancer Centre, which includes a diverse range of models to improve appeal and acceptance with the wider patient community and different groups.
A room in The Cancer Centre has been furnished into a hair salon to allow patients to be seen in a suitably private location, closer to where they receive treatment.
The team has taken part in piloting ‘Great Lengths’ hair loss support workshops with the National Cancer Action Team. The two planned pilot workshops have been such a success that the team is now continuing with this format monthly.