Cancer patients in Rotherham have joined forces with their healthcare specialists to launch a series of new promises to those locally with secondary breast cancer.
The Secondary Breast Cancer pledge seeks to ensure that all those with the condition get the best care and treatment possible at their local hospital.
Guided by feedback from patients, the specialist cancer nursing team at Rotherham Hospital has worked with charities, Breast Cancer Now and Breast Cancer Care, to form the pledge which sets out the standards of care and support those with the condition can expect.
Amongst other commitments, the pledge states that:
- All patients will be offered a holistic needs assessment at the start of their treatment
- Clear, written guidance will be given to all newly diagnosed patients
- An annual forum will be held for patients with secondary breast cancer
The pledge was launched at an event at Rotherham Hospital, attended by Rotherham Mayor, Maggi Clark, patients who helped to shape the pledge, Rotherham’s cancer nurse specialists and pledge partners; Breast Cancer Now and Breast Cancer Care.
The Mayor, Cllr Maggi Clark, said: “In Rotherham we are fortunate to have a top notch breast cancer team.
“What is important about this pledge is that it has taken patient feedback to heart. It is very important that patients can get their views across and the fact that Rotherham’s specialists are here to listen and take action to make things even better is fantastic. It is an honour to help launch this pledge which will help make a difference for future generations.”
Marie Sadler, a Rotherham patient who has been part of the pledge’s focus groups, said: “It has been brilliant to be involved. It has given us a voice and encourages people to speak out. We all had different experiences, some good, some less so, and bringing these together to help shape the pledge is really good.”
Rotherham is just one of only 15 hospitals nationally to sign up to the Secondary Breast Cancer pledge scheme so far, and only the second hospital in South Yorkshire to make a pledge of this kind.
Michelle Fletcher, Clinical Nurse Specialist at Rotherham Hospital, said: “In Rotherham around 40 men and women are currently diagnosed with secondary breast cancer each year. Although incurable it can be treated and controlled – this is why it is now more important than ever that feedback from patients is shared and acted upon. We look forward to further working with our patients in providing an excellent level of care in Rotherham.”
Delyth Morgan, Chief Executive at Breast Cancer Now and Samia al Qadhi, Chief Executive at Breast Cancer Care, said: “We are delighted that Rotherham Hospital has pledged to achieve top standards of care for people living with secondary breast cancer.
“Those living with the disease require specialist support to address their complex needs and the uncertainty they face about the future.
“It is wonderful that patients sit at the heart of this pioneering initiative and that we’re helping to ensure they receive the best treatment and care.”
Click to view the Secondary Breast Cancer Pledge Booklet