4 February 2015
A total of 4,707 people in the West Midlands phoned Macmillan Cancer Support during 2014 seeking help.
New figures from the charity show how many people contacted the Macmillan Support Line during the past 12 months. In Worcestershire, there were 440 callers - of these, 71% of requests were for clinical information and emotional support while the remaining 29% was for welfare or financial guidance queries.
The Macmillan Support Line is for anyone with questions about cancer. It is free to call and staffed by experts who can help with a range of queries - from advice and support with money worries, clinical and treatment information, to being there to listen if a caller just wants to talk. The Macmillan Support Line answered 148,792 calls in 2014 from across the UK, and is funded thanks to donations to Macmillan.
These figures have been released to coincide with Cancer Talk Week (January 26 - 30), Macmillan’s annual awareness-raising week. This year, Macmillan is calling on the public to pledge support online for the charity’s Time to Choose campaign (www.timetochoose.org.uk) and make sure improving cancer care is a priority for the next government at this year’s general election.
David Crosby, General Manager at Macmillan Cancer Support, said: “These figures illustrate just how many people affected by cancer in Worcestershire are reaching out for our help by calling the Macmillan Support Line - and this is only one of our many services. More and more people are surviving cancer and while that is great news, Macmillan is calling on the next government to prevent the soaring number of cancer patients pushing the NHS to its limit. Our Time to Choose campaign aims to make cancer care an election priority and avoid a cancer care crisis. So please go online and show your support.”
Earlier this month, Macmillan revealed there will be a record high 2.5 million people living with cancer in the UK in 2015 - an increase of almost half a million in the last five years.
Ahead of the general election, Macmillan Cancer Support is urging all political parties to commit to the following in their manifestos:
- Delivering cancer survival rates that match the best in Europe, particularly by reducing late diagnosis, investing in care after treatment by delivering the cancer Recovery Package, and addressing the needs of older people.
- Ensuring all cancer patients are treated with the highest levels of dignity and respect, and supporting staff to deliver this.
- Improving end-of-life care for people with cancer by delivering free social care for people at the end of their life, to enable them to spend their final weeks and days in the place of their choice.
The Macmillan Support Line is available Monday to Friday, 9am-8pm, on 0808 808 00 00.