Tracey Voices Support for Lung Cancer Nurses

On Tuesday 16 July, Tracey met with lung cancer nurse specialists in Parliament to hear their concerns about how cutbacks were affecting the care lung cancer patients are receiving.

Lung cancer nurse specialists play a vital role in the delivery of high quality care and treatment to patients with lung cancer. They are in an ideal position to care for patients in a holistic way ensuring that all their care needs are addressed from referral to the lung cancer team, to diagnosis, through treatment and survivorship including end-of-life care.

Every year, over 40,000 people will be diagnosed with lung cancer in the UK with lung cancer nurse specialists providing the expertise to provide and co-ordinate care for patients diagnosed with lung cancer.

However, financial pressures are making it harder for lung cancer nurse specialists to make sure that lung cancer patients receive the care they need.

The Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation (RCLCF) and the National Lung Cancer Forum for Nurses (NLCFN) has published a report showing that despite clear evidence of better outcomes for patients if they received care from a lung cancer nurse specialist, many patients do not receive care from lung cancer nurse specialists.

After meeting with lung cancer nurse specialists at an event in Parliament organised by RCLCF and NLFCN, Tracey said:

“I was very pleased to have the opportunity to meet with lung cancer nurse specialists, who know first-hand how important it is that people with lung cancer receive the care they need.  Thousands of people are diagnosed with lung cancer every year and the care lung cancer nurse specialists provide is invaluable.”

 “We must ensure that every lung cancer patient can see a lung cancer nurse specialist at every stage of their care and treatment and must not allow finances to compromise patient care.”

“I will be urging local services to ensure that patients with lung cancer are able to access lung cancer nurse specialists, to give them the best possible care to cope with the impact of the disease.”

Paula Chadwick, Chief Executive of RCLCF said:  

“Every year over 40,000 people will be diagnosed with lung cancer.  It remains the deadliest form of cancer in the UK, killing 35,000 people every year.”

“Receiving the right treatment, at the right time, can make all the difference.  We know that patients who receive support from lung cancer nurse specialists are nearly twice as likely to receive active anticancer treatment as those that do not receive such support.”

“Lung cancer patients deserve to receive the highest possible quality of care, and we urge local health providers and commissioners to make sure that lung cancer nurse specialists are made a priority”

John White, Chair of the NLCFN said:

“The pressure being placed on lung cancer nurse specialists is immense, as posts come under increasing threat due to austerity.  This is despite clear evidence that patients value their support.”

“Providers and commissioners must ensure that they do not put financial expediency ahead of patient experience and outcomes.”