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New Cancer Support Centre

cancersupport1PEOPLE affected by cancer in Ceredigion are now able to access a newly developed Macmillan Cancer Information and Support Centre based in Bronglais Hospital, Aberystwyth. The service was officially launched on Wednesday (May 4) by Steve Moore, Hywel Dda University Health Board Chief Executive, and Susan Morris, Head of Services for Macmillan Wales. The service is part of a £3.3m investment made in the health board over the last five years to support posts and projects, and £500,000 specifically for information and support services.

The service will include Macmillan information and support centres and co-ordinators in all four hospitals across Hywel Dda. Susan Morris Macmillan Wales Head of Services said: “There are 3,160 people in Ceredigion living with and beyond cancer and 465 people are diagnosed each year. This means they need more than medical help, they also need practical, emotional and financial support, which the Macmillan Information and Support Centre can provide. “People affected by cancer can be overwhelmed by the amount of information about their diagnosis and treatment. The service will make sure that anyone affected by cancer can access the right information and support.

“Our centre not only provides good quality information for people affected by cancer, but Gwynneth and Ingrid offer face-to-face support as well as helping people find other services, including welfare benefits advice.” Steve Moore, Chief Executive of Hywel Dda University Health Board, added: “We are extremely proud to mark the opening of this information centre in Bronglais Hospital which will provide local people with additional support when they need it most. “I’m delighted we have been able to work with our partner, Macmillan, to provide this valuable service closer to home for our patients.”

Macmillan Cancer Information and Support Co-ordinators Gwynneth Shiers and Ingrid Evans said: “Based in a rural area of Wales, we are passionate about getting information out to as many people as possible, using GP surgeries, informal presentations and word of mouth. “Being in a designated area is a huge asset and sometimes people passing will just pop in. Some of the comments we have had include: ’It’s so nice to have someone to talk to, thank you, I feel better already;’ and ‘I wish I’d known about this service sooner.’

“The Macmillan recipe book is also proving very popular.” Macmillan Cancer Support has fully funded the Information and Support Centre in partnership with Hywel Dda University Health Board. The centre is based by the purple entrance of the hospital and offers: • Information on a variety of cancer types; • Financial, practical, physical and emotional support; • Confidential advice for patients, families and carers, and also to healthcare professionals. Macmillan can only fund services such as these thanks to the generosity of the public.

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Jon Coles

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