Patients leave a lasting legacy on cancer services in Wakefield
In 2016, Macmillan Cancer Support brought 12 people affected by cancer together with the ambition of improving cancer care and support across South and Mid Yorkshire.
The Macmillan Patient Advisory Board, all with lived experience of being cancer patients or carers, met as part of the Macmillan Living With and Beyond Cancer Programme, a five year programme of work to improve cancer services, which has published the findings of its final evaluation report.
The Macmillan programme has invested over £5 million in improving personalised cancer care and support over the past five years. These developments have been far reaching and will support regional cancer services in meeting the challenges brought about by the pandemic.
Paul Vose, from Ackworth, was treated for cancer 15 years ago and has been part of the Macmillan Patient Advisory Board for four years.
He said: “We’ve made a difference; the Macmillan programme has let patients in and brought organisations from across health and care together to improve services and patient experiences.”
The improvements within cancer care and support have been far reaching – with £2.5 million invested into creating new support roles within cancer services, improving IT and digital connectivity, establishing patient support groups and providing the cancer workforce with valuable learning and development opportunities.
The Macmillan Patient Advisory Board have been instrumental in approving funding and development decisions in regional cancer services, including the four Macmillan Cancer Support Worker roles at the Mid-Yorkshire NHS Hospitals Trust – these roles support the emotional, financial and psychological impacts of a cancer diagnosis, as well as helping patients and their loved ones navigate the health and social care system.
As the Macmillan programme concludes, Macmillan’s Chief Executive Lynda Thomas said: “Five years ago Macmillan wanted to set the gold standard for involving people living with cancer, to understand what was really needed, we have been able to realise this ambition because of the Patient Advisory Board.
“Every funding and development decision was held to account and made a difference in shaping local cancer services for the better.”