Macmillan Cancer Support has invested over £400,000 into six new specialist skin cancer roles in north Wales to help meet a rising demand for care and treatment.
Working in partnership with the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board, Macmillan’s investment follows a specialist cancer nurse workforce review conducted in 2020 which identified skin cancer as a clear priority.
The funding, which has only been made possible by the generosity of Macmillan’s fundraisers and supporters, has seen the development of three new clinical nurse specialist roles, as well as three assistant practitioner posts.
With the new staff now embedded in their new roles, the aim is to make sure more people with skin cancer across the region can be offered a key worker to help navigate them through what is often a complex cancer care journey.
The specialist staff will also play a crucial role in helping to make sure that people with cancer receive a holistic needs assessment, so all their concerns – be they physical, emotional, or financial – can be captured in a detailed and personalised care plan.
Public Health Wales research shows how much the demand for skin cancer treatment and care is expected to rise.
Phil Ralfs, one of Macmillan’s new clinical nurse specialists based in Ysbyty Gwynedd said: “I have worked in health care for over 22 years, and it is a real privilege to now be working with Macmillan to help improve the level of care offered to skin cancer patients in north Wales.
“As a new team we be working across north Wales and we aim to be there for our patients at every step, helping to make sure they get the personalised care they need, and to navigate them through every stage of their treatment. We know that the number of cancer specialists needs to increase in Wales if we are to manage the increasing numbers of people affected by cancer, and it is great to be part of that response.”
Richard Pugh, head of partnerships for Macmillan Cancer Support in Wales, said he was “hugely proud” of the ongoing partnership with Betsi Cadwaladr and this investment.
“It moves us another step further in making sure that specialist cancer care staff are being placed where they are needed the most,” he said.
Nicky McLardie, associate nursing director for the west of Betsi Cadwaladr, said: “These posts are a result of a successful collaboration between the health board and Macmillan Cancer Support.
“The aim is to provide people diagnosed with skin cancer with an excellent experience of care. I have enjoyed working with Macmillan and the rest of the Betsi team on bringing this to fruition and I am very proud to have been involved.”
For advice, information or a chat, you can call us free on 0808 808 0000 or visit macmillan.org.uk.