Angela shows support for secondary breast cancer
Recently Breast Cancer Care met with Angela at Parliament, after a survey by the charity revealed that the majority (90%) of secondary breast cancer patients are experiencing physical pain, many almost daily.
As part of Secondary Breast Cancer Awareness Day (October 13th), Angela attended the event - hosted by Steve Brine MP, co-chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Breast Cancer - to meet with women who have been diagnosed with the disease, and highlight the charity’s campaign and petition.
Alarmingly the survey findings reveal that two-fifths (41%) have never been offered a referral to a palliative care team by their healthcare professional. So Breast Cancer Care is calling for healthcare professionals to make all secondary breast cancer patients aware, at the point of diagnosis, how palliative care can help to manage their pain.
Commenting Angela said said:
Suggested quote: “It is extremely important to be showing my support for secondary breast cancer patients today. These survey findings are very shocking and more must be done to ensure these patients are receiving prompt referral for palliative care, before it’s too late. I would encourage my constituents to back Breast Cancer Care’s campaign and sign their petition.”
The poll of more than 200 people living with a secondary breast cancer diagnosis - where the cancer has spread and although can be controlled, cannot be cured –. found that more than three-quarters (78%) said they couldn’t undertake normal activities like housework or childcare and two-thirds (70%) said it had an impact on their relationships and intimacy.
Eleanor Meade, 56, who received a secondary breast cancer diagnosis in 2008, says:
“I only heard about palliative care through speaking to other women who had secondary breast cancer and I feel that’s unacceptable. I needed it much sooner than that. In my opinion women, or men, with secondary breast cancer should be informed that the hospice [where many palliative care experts are based] has the facilities to make their lives much easier very early on in the diagnosis.”
Diana Jupp, Director of Services and Campaigns at Breast Cancer Care, says:
“We want to say a huge thank you to Angela for coming along to our event and showing her support. This is an incredibly important issue. We speak to more women living with secondary breast cancer than any other organisation and we know they feel their support and care is second rate.
“This survey shows just how many secondary breast cancer patients are struggling on in excruciating pain and, because of a lack of timely access to palliative care, not receiving the care and support they need.
“We want secondary breast cancer to be a priority on the health agenda, only then will this group of patients begin to have the support and care they need to help them as they live with their diagnosis.”
Sign here to help ensure secondary breast cancer is a priority on the health agenda and help women living with the disease receive the care they need: www.breastcancercare.org.uk/hiddeneffects
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Notes to Editors
Breast Cancer Care is the only specialist breast cancer support charity working throughout the UK. We were founded in 1973 by Betty Westgate, who was herself diagnosed with breast cancer. In the ensuing forty years we have supported millions of women and their families through our face-to-face, phone and online services. We also provide training, support and networking opportunities to specialist breast cancer nurses, and Breast Cancer Care publications are used by the majority of breast cancer units throughout the UK. We campaign for better support and care and promote the importance of early detection, involving people with breast cancer in all that we do. Visit www.breastcancercare.org.uk or call our free helpline on 0808 800 6000.
End to “game of chance”
Angela calls for an end to “game of chance” bus service for blind people
Getting off at the right bus stop is like “playing a game of chance”, says the Guide Dogs charity, talking about blind users experiences of navigating the bus network without sight.
Angela recently got a chance to experience for herself why people with sight loss need audio-visual announcements (AV) on buses, through playing a memory game.
AV is essential for people with sight loss to live independently, yet only one fifth of the UK’s buses have AV. Without AV bus passengers with sight loss have to ask the driver to remember to tell them when they have reached their stop.
Finding out more about Guide Dogs’ work, Angela heard that 7 in 10 bus passengers with sight loss have been forgotten by a bus driver. For a sighted person, missing a stop is an annoyance, but for someone with sight loss, it is potentially very dangerous.
Angela Smith MP commented:
“Remembering the journeys at the Guide Dogs’ stand was a great way of emphasising how impossible it is for a bus driver to always remember to tell people when to get off. It’s a pity the Government has not taken action on this important issue - AV is such a simple and cheap solution and would ensure access for all to public transport that is so vital to people’s everyday lives.”
James White, Campaigns Manager at Guide Dogs commented:
“Guide dogs do fantastic work getting people out and about safely, and the lack of AV acts as a real barrier to their independence. That’s why we’re urging politicians like Angela Smith to call for the mandatory installation of AV on buses, something that is cheap to do.”
AV doesn’t just help people with sight loss – tourists, older people and infrequent bus users all find AV useful. Guide Dogs released their Destination Unknown report this September showing that nearly half of survey respondents said they would use the bus more frequently if it had AV.
Note to Editors
The ‘Destination Unknown’ survey was conducted between February and July 2014. 2,009 people participated in the survey from across the UK. 989 responses were received from people who identify themselves as having a disability, including 818 respondents who are blind or partially sighted.
Concerns raised over the viability of the site of the proposed Chapeltown Academy
Serious concerns have been brought to the attention of Pensitone & Stocksbridge MP, Angela over the pro posed location of the new Chapelt own Academy.
After being contacted and informed that the proposed location for the school on the Hydra Business in Ecclesfield still seem s to be in use , the MP made further enquiries.
In conversations with Sheffield Planning Department she has discovered the proposed location for the school would require planning consent from the authority because the top floor of the building would be required for other uses and not u sed by the proposed free school.
To gain the necessary permission of course would take time and makes virtually impossible the proposed opening of the school in September on that site .
The MP has also heard, although not yet confirmed by Department of Education Officials that they department is looking for alternative sites to locate the school.
Commenting on these developments, Angela said;
“This shambles is just typical of the Tory Government ’ s ideological ly driven Free School program me . Young people who are wanting to go to some of the country’s best universities have put their faith in a project that has been ill thought through and to be honest badly planned and executed from the start .
The proposed location for the school on Hydra Park is presently being re-advertised by ‘Knight Frank ’ at £3.75 a square foot ( http://search.knightfrank.co.uk/cpd179041 ) and it is unclear whether new offers for the site are being considered.