Doctor, how do I…?

2nd April 2019

Have you ever had a patient ask, ‘How do I get to all of my appointments whilst living with the side effects of cancer treatment?’ or ‘Can I still drive with my brain tumour?’

We work collaboratively with numerous cancer charities to empower GPs to answer these questions quickly and confidently. There is no need to reinvent the wheel, as they say. Rather than us spending time creating our own support resources for patients, we collaborate with existing charities to raise awareness of the fantastic support already available. In the same vane, our tool prevents GPs from spending valuable consultation time searching for answers or appropriate patient support, by quickly directing them to relevant resources.

By joining forces with a range of charities, we ensure all cancer patients, regardless of cancer type or age, can be signposted to tailored support and guidance at the point of diagnosis through their GP. For example, Teenage Cancer Trust and Trekstock provide support for young people affected by cancer, while Target Ovarian Cancer, The Brain Tumour Charity and CoppaFeel! provide resources for specific cancer types. We currently have over a dozen supporters and we are excited to be working with several more charities about to join us very soon.



Types of Resources

Our supporters’ resources cover a range of areas including ‘Benefits & Travel’, ‘Mental Health & Well Being’, ‘Nutrition’ and ‘Treatment & Side Effects’. By covering such a large landscape, patients can be quickly directed to high quality, tailored resources to answer a vast array of questions, such as ‘How should I adapt my diet now I have pancreatic cancer?’ or ‘What is the best way to exercise during my cancer treatment?’

Furthermore, a large range of patient information leaflets are included within the resources available via the tool, allowing patients to be provided with tumour specific information.





How do I Access these Resources?

Once you have entered your patient’s symptoms, signs and risk factors and the recommendations are presented by the tool, a ‘resources’ tab appears on the same page. With no extra effort, the relevant resources for your patient are available as a PDF to be printed immediately for your patient.

You can also view all resources uploaded onto the tool via the ‘Resources’ tab at the top of the screen.

Collaboration

Collaboration is vital to ensure cancer patients receive the best cancer care, treatment and support. GPs have the potential to significantly improve the cancer journey for many people. We hear time and time again that patients become aware of available tailored support far too late in their cancer journey, alongside how an individual’s experience of cancer, and ultimate outcomes, are often greatly improved by accessing support.

GPs can significantly improve the day to day lives of many cancer patients by embracing their potential role as ‘gate openers’. By signposting patients to relevant support displayed in the ‘resources’ section of the tool at point of patients being sent for initial testing or following diagnosis, GPs can reduce anxiety generated by the lack of direct answers to their questions. As discussed, the time it takes to find specific resources for your patients on benefits, travel and DVLA, can significantly impact the quality of care you can provide to your patient. The C the Signs tool quickly and easily highlights relevant information and support for your patient; freeing up limited consultation time!

Finally, make sure to keep an eye out for poignant articles written by our current and upcoming supporters in Spotlight in the following weeks. Our supporters often use this platform to share whatever message it is they most want to reach GPs, so embrace this rare opportunity!

One more thing, are there any resources for cancer patients you would like to see added to the tool?

Or, would you like to write a resource yourself?

Get in touch – info@cthesigns.co.uk