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Doctors urge public to attend cancer appointments
Bay Health and Care Partners are reassuring the population of Morecambe Bay that it is safe to attend cancer appointments during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
People who are being tested or treated for cancer are being urged to keep their appointments as new measures are in place to help protect patients and staff from coronavirus.
It’s important to know that cancer assessments and treatments are still happening during the pandemic. New innovations such as video consultation, reviewing photographs of skin lesions and arranging urgent tests are helping the recovery process. Meanwhile, specialised surgical hubs are helping to ensure patients receive safe and timely operations for cancer.
Dr Thimmiah Arun, Barrow GP and GP Lead on Cancer for Morecambe Bay Clinical Commissioning Group (pictured) said: “We’re aware that some people are concerned about attending cancer appointments in a healthcare setting as they’re worried they might catch COVID-19, however, it’s vital that cancer treatment is not delayed.
“Early intervention really does save lives and cancer specialists and local teams throughout the NHS are working together to ensure cancer services can be delivered as safely as possible.”
Dr Sarah Hauxwell, Histopathologist Clinical Director Core Clinical Services and Lead Clinician for University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Coming into hospital is a different experience than you will have had previously. A number of safety measures have been put in place to help protect patients and staff from coronavirus during treatment. These include additional signage and floor markings to promote social distancing, infection control measures and all staff and patients will be wearing protective face masks.”
Do not attend and please cancel your appointment if you have any COVID-19 symptoms. The main symptoms are:
- a high temperature
- a new continuous cough
- a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste
If you have any of the main symptoms of coronavirus:
- Get a test to check if you have coronavirus as soon as possible
- Stay at home and do not have visitors until you get your test result – only leave your home to have a test
If you are worried about your symptoms or you’re not sure what to do use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service: https://111.nhs.uk/covid-19/ call NHS 111 if you can’t get help online. Do not go to places like a GP practice, hospital, or pharmacy.
Hear from cancer clinicians in this short video: https://youtu.be/8VRxZQB2C-o
Online advice about cancer and coronavirus:
- Cancer Research UK information about Coronavirus (COVID-19) and cancer treatment
- Macmillan Cancer Support information about cancer treatment and coronavirus
- NHS information about cancer and finding your local services
- NHS information about coronavirus symptoms and what to do if you have them
- Lancashire and South Cumbria’s Let’s Talk Cancer campaign