Cross-sector support service proving essential to cancer patents
Cancer patients in Glasgow are increasingly turning to support organisations for practical problems.
A partnership with Macmillan, Glasgow City Council and NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde, the project has helped patients with an average eight problems relating to issues such as money and housing as well as emotional problems.
The service, available to all cancer patients within Glasgow, offers patients a needs assessment to assess their concerns at significant points in their treatment and also supports carers and families.
This project is a fantastic example of health, social care and charities coming together
Among the almost 3,500 issues dealt with by the service included practical problems related to caring for themselves at home and issues applying for benefits.
Head of the service Sandra McDermott said: "We knew there was a real need for someone to help cancer patients deal with all the problems the illness causes, but even we have been shocked at the scale of the need out there.
"To think that most of those we've helped, some in quite desperate situation, would have struggled on alone if this service didn't exist is heart-breaking."
Macmillan's director Elspeth Atkinson added: "We know the needs of cancer patients extend well beyond the physical. Cancer can impact on every aspect of a patient's life, from their emotional wellbeing to their finances.
"There is already a lot of support available but far too often patients don't know about it. This project is a fantastic example of health, social care and charities coming together to put the patient at the centre of everything we do.
"We hope the success of this project in Glasgow will be recognised and emulated by health and social care services across Scotland."