Older People Living with Cancer

Peer advocates supporting older people affected by cancer

Cancer Patient Experience Survey – what can advocacy services learn?

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The 2015 National Cancer Patient Experience Survey has been published.  It is the fifth time this survey has been undertaken.  The National Results Summary is easy to read and includes illustrative graphics.  A spreadsheet accompanies it that allows you to drill down and see results according to the type of cancer the respondent has and demographic information.  Additional survey reports showing results for each CCG and each local Trust will be published shortly.

Macmillan Cancer Support have responded to the publication and Dr Fran Woodard, Executive Director of Policy and Impact said: ‘The results suggest that there is still a one-size-fits-all approach to cancer care and a lack of personalised support’.

I noted a number of the statistics that I feel demonstrate that there is work for advocacy services to do. It is good to read that 78% of respondents said that they were definitely involved as much as they wanted to be in decisions about their care and treatment.  However only 54% said that, before they started their treatment (s) they were definitely also told about any side effects of the treatment that could affect them in the future rather than straightaway; only 55% said that hospital staff gave them information about how to get financial help or any benefits they might be entitled to; and only 52% said that, during their hospital visit (as an inpatient), they definitely found someone on the hospital staff to talk to about their worries and fears.

What do you think?

Kathleen Gillett, Dorset Macmillan Advocacy

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