Transforming cancer care in Scotland
'It's only once treatment finishes that just how not normal things will ever be again strikes home.'
While patients often say their treatment was good, too many tell us that they didn’t know where to go to find support coping with the emotional, financial and practical problems cancer can bring.
For too many people this means they struggle on alone with issues ranging from extreme fatigue and pain, to depression and anxiety.
That’s why we’re spending £5m funding the Transforming Care After Treatment (TCAT) programme in partnership with the Scottish Government, the NHS and local authorities across the country.
'The collateral damage cancer causes is generally underestimated. It hits everything.'
This programme is made up of dozens of pilot projects taking place across Scotland within the NHS and local authorities, all testing better ways to give people who’ve had a diagnosis of cancer and their loved ones the support they need.
Every pilot is unique but all will make sure those finishing treatment have their medical, emotional, financial and practical needs assessed before striving to make sure these needs are met.
A key aspect of this will be making sure the many groups and organisations who can help someone after cancer treatment work together, from hospital health care teams, to local authoritiy social care staff and local charities.
Every pilot will be carefully evaluated and the projects with the most positive impact will be used as models for how every single person in Scotland should be supported after their cancer treatment.
A massive challenge
'No one talks about problems after treatment so I didn't realise it was normal. I felt ungrateful for wanting more support.'
Transforming cancer support is a massive challenge, but it’s one we must meet.
There are currently around 200,000 people in Scotland living with the impact of a cancer diagnosis. The current system just wasn’t set up to deal with the huge numbers of people who are diagnosed with, and now thankfully survive, cancer.
With the number of people living with cancer expected to almost double in just 15 years, we need an urgent and dramatic new approach to how people with cancer are supported after their treatment ends.
Find out more or get involved
The TCAT programme was designed with extensive involvement from people who have experienced cancer directly or as a carer. We’re looking for more patients and carers to join us to make sure the voices of those who’ve experienced cancer continue to be heard as the pilots get under way. To find out more contact our service user involvement manager Simon Malzer or call him on 07715 416 558.
If you have questions about the TCAT programme, contact the programme manager Gordon Mclean.