Many people who have cancer or have survived the disease struggle with the physical and psycho-social consequences of treatment that can be avoided or managed. There is also growing evidence to support the role of healthy lifestyle choices, particularly exercise, in promoting better outcomes and survival rates.
The Newcastle Macmillan-One-to-One Service aims to ensure patients living with and beyond a diagnosis of cancer are supported to live as well as possible following treatment. The Newcastle Service is one of 16 implementation sites nationally and is piloting four new roles to address the concerns of patients who have needs of varying complexity.
An increase in cancer survivors places greater pressure on aftercare. Currently cancer follow-up pathways are secondary care-based, but community involvement will be increasingly important.
Many patients have unmet needs, particularly at treatment end, and may struggle with manageable physical or psychological consequences of treatment.
Macmillan Cancer Support (MCS) has been working to address this. The Newcastle-upon-Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, with local GP practices, was one of 16 pilot sites for the Macmillan One-to-One Implementation project, aimed at developing a new model of after-care.
This project was an opportunity to ensure patients continued to have access to individualised holistic support and to understand how to live well following treatment.
Among the project’s objectives were to identify, assess and meet the needs of patients at the end of treatment, and to develop a model of care to provide effective support. The team also aimed to measure patient experience and quality of care, to develop a risk stratification tool and to identify the workforce and skills to provide effective support to this patient group.
Other objectives were to develop strong working relationships with all relevant partners, establish a directory of services, to explore sustainability and transferability of the service, and develop educational opportunities.
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