In response to the National Cancer Survivorship Initiative, a special event will be held at the Bournemouth International Centre on 25 January. The event will offer local agencies including the NHS, Social Services and Macmillan Cancer Support the chance to get together, exchange ideas and develop an ongoing strategy for the future of cancer care in Dorset.
Those attending Living well with and beyond cancer in Dorset will have the opportunity to hear presentations from local GPs and patients, share experiences with local service users and hear about initiatives both nationally and across Dorset to support patients surviving a cancer diagnosis.
There will be an invited presenter, Ann Daniels, who is the first woman in history, along with expedition teammate Caroline Hamilton, to reach the North and South Poles as part of all women teams. She will talk about surviving, leadership skills and the importance of being flexible with assessments that are continually challenged within changing climates.
The event will be opened by Ciaran Devane, CEO of Macmillan Cancer Support. He said “I am delighted to be opening this important conference, bringing together people from across the health and social care services in Dorset to discuss the ways in which we support people living with and beyond cancer. It is good news that people are living longer after cancer, but the way in which we support them has to change. The system as it is cannot cope, and the number of people living after a cancer diagnosis will double to 4m by 2030, so we need to make changes. Conferences such as this one are vital if we are to make real changes to the system”.
Current statistics show that survivorship rates for people diagnosed with cancer are increasing both locally and nationally. In Dorset there are 4500 new cases of cancer diagnosed annually and year on year more are surviving.
Since 1993 the five year survival rate for women with breast cancer in Dorset has increased by ten percent to around 85% whilst the same figure for people diagnosed with colorectal cancer is 61%.
Organiser Verena Cooper, Lead Nurse from Dorset Cancer Network said “Across the county we have a changing demographic which means that cancer survivorship is increasing year on year. With early awareness and diagnosis of cancer, more people potentially may be touched by the disease, and as a society we need to help individuals adjust and value what is important to them through personalised care planning and help them to live their lives to the full. This will be achieved through an increase in self management, exercise and diet.
The aim of the event is to raise awareness and support both local statutory and non statutory partners to embrace the survivorship agenda for the benefit of everyone across Dorset”.
Leisure and cultural trust BH Live, is hosting the conference at the Bournemouth International Centre.
Layne Hamerston, Partnerships Development Manager for BH Live said: “It is well documented that leading a more active life can be extremely beneficial for health, fitness and wellbeing. Providing considerate and personalised physical activity advice appropriate to an individual’s needs and abilities, has proven to be extremely rewarding for participants and everyone involved in the delivery of the BACSUP. BH Live is pleased to be actively involved in this event which will generate more opportunities for people to live well with and beyond cancer”.
Outside of the presentations attendees will have chance to network and visit exhibitors from other agencies. Around 50 stands will be present including local and national support groups, the National Cancer Survivorship Initiative and the Teenage Cancer Trust. A special highlight will be the Pink Champagne Dragon Boat and their crew, a local charity set up to support and encourage women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer to be empowered and help themselves to lead full and active lives.
Funding for the event has come from Dorset Cancer Network which includes the partnership panel consisting of patients and cares who have experienced cancer, and act as an expert voice to shape services within the future, the National Cancer Survivorship Initiative and Macmillan Cancer Support.
A patient event is expected to be planned for later in the year to help inform local people about the strategy. Further details will be published on www.dorset.nhs.uk.
BH Live have been collaborating with Macmillan and the Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospital developing a Bournemouth After Cancer Survivorship Programme (BACSUP), which is now nationally recognised and proven to improve the health, fitness and wellbeing of people living with and beyond cancer.
Since 2009, over 300 people have taken part in the BACSUP programme with many reporting significant improvements in their health, including healthier blood pressure, weight, fitness and a renewed sense of health and wellbeing.
The Dorset Cancer Network includes the partnership panel consisting of patients and carers who have experienced cancer, and act as an expert voice to shape services within the future
Comment from local survivor Anne Bartlett who will be speaking at the conference.
"In January 2010 I was a 50 year old woman whose youngest child was in his second year at University, and who, with my husband, was adjusting to the Empty Nest Syndrome, and looking forward with excitement to all the things we were going to do now that we had a little more freedom, for the first time in 30 years!
Suddenly, I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer, and it felt as a if a door had been slammed on every bit of looking forward. Perhaps there wouldn't even be a forward to plan for. That is when my Journey through Cancer Patient to Cancer Survivor began."
About the NHS Bournemouth and Poole and NHS Dorset cluster
NHS Bournemouth and Poole joined with NHS Dorset to make a cluster in April 2011. Together they are the Primary Care Trusts responsible for commissioning healthcare services for the population of Dorset, Bournemouth and Poole.
Further information on the National Cancer Survivorship Initiative is available online at www. ncsi.org.uk
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