A MAJOR project to transform the way in which cancer patients and those approaching the end of life care are looked after in East Staffordshire is being launched later this month.
Five of Staffordshire’s Clinical Commissioning Groups, including the one that oversees the east of the county, are teaming up with Macmillan Cancer Support to change the way people with cancer or those at the end of their lives are cared for and supported.
The project will look at commissioning services in a new way – so that there would be one principal organisation responsible for the overall provision of cancer care and one for end of life care.
Andrew Donald, who is helping to put the project together, said: “This is about providing the people of East Staffordshire with world-class cancer and end of life care. Patients have told us that things are not as good as they should be.
“They have told us about not knowing who to turn to in a crisis leading to inappropriate and unnecessary admissions into hospital.
“We have heard from patients and carers who have been lost in the system, or who have struggled to get the support when and where they need it – this clearly is not acceptable.
“We also know that access to care at the right time is a problem, for example, people are not able to die at home if they wish to do so .
“We want to develop the support needed to make sure that people have real choice.
“We want to make sure that they receive the best possible support wherever and whenever they need it, and that no-one feels as though they have been lost in the system.”
Macmillan director of professional engagement Stephen Richards said: “Being diagnosed with cancer is one of the toughest things any of us can face.
“Macmillan is determined that through this programme, nobody in Staffordshire will. We are looking forward to working with the CCGs on this project and making a real difference to patients’ lives.”
Visit www.staffordshirecancerandeol.com for more information.