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Cancer nurse shortage; You Say Email:letters@liverpoolecho.co.uk uk.



IWAS extremely concerned to read that, aswith the last recessionwhen therewere a number of reports of clinical nurse specialists being returned to ward du ties, again the role of the clinical nurse specialist is being eroded to cut costs (Royal Liverpool hospital specialist nurses told towork general ward shifts,ECHOSeptember 27).

I hope the short-sighted mistakes of that period are not repeated in the current times of economic austerity.

Clinical nurse specialists play a vital role in caring for and supporting patients and their carers throughout their cancer treatment.

They provide information, advice and support, andwe constantly hear feedback frompatients and their families ofwhat a difference access to specialist nursesmakes to their experience of having cancer. There is growing evidence that specialist nurses improve the quality and effectiveness of cancer services, and reduce costs through avoiding hospital admissions and reduce length of stay.

There is already a shortfall in access to specialist nurses, and this is particularly acute for lung cancer. The case load of lung cancer nurses can be as much as double that of other forms of cancer.As a result of this not all lung cancer patients get access to a specialist nurse, despite having complex needs.

for Joe and who tookme toget in them.

Ve raDoran So to read that these, already much in demand, nurseswill be stretched even further by being told to work general ward shifts is extremely worrying.

The Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation urges all NHS Trusts and the Department of Health to give lung cancer patients a fair deal by protecting the role of these specialist nurses, whomake such a difference to the 39,750 people diagnosed with lung cancer every year.

Dr RosemaryGillespie, chief executive, The Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation
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Title Annotation:Letters
Publication:Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)
Date:Sep 30, 2010
Words:291
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