Cancer Hotline marks first anniversary

23rd Oct 2023

More than 30 per cent of callers accessing the Cancer Hotline in its first year have been referred for further investigative tests.

Patients living in Sandwell and West Birmingham can contact the service, which is marking its first year anniversary this month, if they are suffering from the signs of cancer.

They are then triaged by specialist nurses and referred onto the two week wait cancer pathway if their symptoms indicate the disease. Funded by the West Midlands Cancer Alliance, the service is a partnership between the Trust and the Black Country Integrated Care Board and is the first of its kind in the country. 

Earlier this month, the hotline scooped the Clinical Team of the Year award in the Trust’s staff recognition event The Star Awards.

Jenny Donovan, Cancer Services Manager at the Trust, said: “The hotline has achieved exactly what it set out to do – to make sure patients have the tests they need and any treatment required as quickly as possible.

“Many people are unaware of signs of cancer and the team has also been highlighting this through engaging with our population and creating video information.”

The Trust’s Lead Cancer Nurse Jo Harvey, said of The Star Award: “It’s a real honour for the team to be acknowledged for their hard work.  Figures for the first year show that 32 per cent of people calling in have been referred to the two week wait cancer pathway, demonstrating it’s a much needed service which is making a difference to the health of our population.

“Anyone who is worried can ring the advice line on 0121 507 3330, Monday to Friday, between 8am and 4pm.

“If the triage nurse thinks that the person doesn’t need to see a specialist or have tests, they may recommend the person contacts their GP.”

Symptoms of cancer include unexplained weight loss, unusual swellings or lumps, changes to a mole, blood in wee or poo, changes in bowel habits for more than six weeks, a hoarse voice for more than three weeks, difficulties in swallowing, unusual changes to your breast and vaginal bleeding after menopause or between periods.

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