23 November 2016
Macmillan and NHS inform have developed a brand new website which allows people to personalise the information they need right at their fingertips.
Scots looking to manage a long term health condition, or just to take care of themselves a bit better, can now fill up an online 'shopping' basket with health and care information to suit their needs.
Scotland's national health information service NHS inform, has developed a brand new website which allows people to personalise the information they need right at their fingertips. For people with conditions such as cancer, this will make a big difference to the way they manage their health and cope with their treatment.
The 'Info for Me' tool on www.nhsinform.scot, has been developed by NHS 24 and Macmillan Cancer Support after patients said they'd have managed better if they'd known more about their treatment.
Macmillan’s Programme Manager for Scotland, Gordon McLean, said: “More people are being diagnosed with and surviving cancer than ever before and we know too many of them aren’t getting all the information and support they need."
Mum Mandy Macfarlane, 42, said: “I can’t remember being given much information on my cancer, and if I was, I didn’t take any of it in. I was told that I had a terminal diagnosis and was given a book about what to expect. That book is still under my bed and hasn’t been touched. I didn’t feel ready to read it.
“Everyone has different stages when they are ready to find out what about their illness and what help is available. I didn’t know where to go for help, I didn’t know who to ask, as at the time I thought that wanting more information would be me showing weakness. If there had been a tool out there such as 'Info for Me' which could have helped me take back control it would have been fantastic. Something that could help people get a little control and help you to think about what you need, what to expect – it would make a big difference.
“I didn’t google my cancer much – I thought it would be better to go down a ‘need to know’ route, so for example when I was going through chemo, I looked up what I could expect because of the treatment. There is a lot of information out there and it can be very overwhelming, particularly when there is so much else going on. Having a cancer diagnosis makes you feel very out of control, so to get a wee bit of that power back would have been great.”
Originally developed to support people with cancer, the 'Info for Me' tool can now be used by people with a range of long term conditions and one of many new features on the redesigned NHS inform website.
NHS 24's Medical Director Professor George Crooks says when people are better informed they manage their health and wellbeing better: "The personalisation tools such as 'Info for Me' means that NHS inform can make a huge difference because we know that when people are better informed they make better choices, or manage a condition better.
"'Info for Me' can be used for all sorts of conditions as well as cancer, and there's also a refreshed 'Self Help Guide' which helps people understand and manage any symptoms they may be experiencing."
"The new look NHS inform is there to help people to manage their health with Scotland specific information about tests, treatments and local services. It's a national resource available 24/7 that should be a first port of call for anyone with a query about health and care."