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Virtual support sessions available for people living with cancer in West Lancashire

Virtual support sessions available for people living with cancer in West Lancashire

by Danielle Thompson (October 2020)

VIRTUAL support sessions will be launched for West Lancashire’s cancer patients in November.

Like many organisations, the West Lancashire Macmillan Centre adapted and innovated in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

The centre in Skelmersdale is a partnership between Macmillan Cancer Support and NHS West Lancashire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), it supports people living with and beyond cancer in a range of ways.

Dr Jack Kinsey, a local GP and cancer clinical lead at NHS West Lancashire CCG said: “We know that those shielding from COVID-19 have found lockdown to be a very lonely and scary time, and people living with cancer need help now more than ever.

“The centre has planned a series of virtual sessions from the 2nd to the 26th November to help prepare people affected by cancer, their carers, and their family and friends for the transition through their cancer journey.”

The West Lancashire Macmillan Centre and the Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust are supporting the sessions that will cover a range of topics. Some will be delivered by clinical nurse specialists from the hospital, and others will be led by local support services such as Citizens Advice Bureau, the local community, voluntary and faith sector, and clinical psychology. Practical advice will also be on the agenda, including exercise, fatigue, skincare and emotional support.     

The centre usually runs Health and Wellbeing Events twice a year providing health and wellbeing information and advice and signposting local resources and services. As most of us have adapted to staying connected through video calls, it is hoped these new virtual sessions should come naturally to the majority of people.

For those that don’t have the technology to take part in the virtual session the West Lancashire Macmillan Centre can provide you with information on the many services across West Lancashire.

Caroline Flynn, Macmillan information and support service manager added: “Living with cancer is overwhelming for many people and their loved ones, and those feelings of anxiety have been heightened during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“It’s so important that we are able to continue offering support despite the challenges we have in delivering face-to-face sessions, so we’re really pleased to be able to offer these virtually through this innovative Health & Wellbeing event. We’ve held many virtual sessions during the pandemic and had some really good feedback so I hope people will join us during November.”

For a full timetable of the Health and Wellbeing sessions or information about how to access support through the centre, contact Caroline Flynn 01695 402164 / 07551122125 or email vcl.macmillanwestlancs@nhs.net.

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