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    North Derbyshire Radio

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Chesterfield cancer nurse on the past year for International Nurses Day. Listen to the full interview with Sheree Hall here….

todayMay 12, 2021 12

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It’s been a tough year for nurses and Sheree Hall, Macmillan Lead Cancer Nurse based at Chesterfield Royal Hospital, has been giving us a personal insight into what it’s been like on the front line in cancer treatment and care to mark International Nurses Day (12th May) and European Cancer Nursing Day (18th May).

“The past year has brought many challenges for everyone both personally and professionally and cancer services amongst many others were affected enormously,” Sheree said. “The worst aspect for our staff was trying to support people whilst adhering to guidelines. This affected people awaiting a cancer diagnosis, people awaiting tests or treatments, people who had treatment stopped or paused. As you can imagine this was so distressing for patients and their families. Staff were in many instances unable to change this but tried to support people remotely or with social distancing in place which was and still is extremely difficult. We also had the added issue of some staff having to be redeployed to support people with COVID-19 in the hospital.”


“The support from the local community has been overwhelming and the understanding that patients have had despite the experience not being what it may have previously been as a result of COVID-19. Although virtual communication is not always appropriate, the pandemic has enabled us to embrace this and in some situations and circumstances this is better for patients and can save on waiting times in clinic, travel times and costs.”


The role of Macmillan clinical nurse specialists for cancer patients is critical and this has proved even more so during the pandemic. As the patient’s key contact, they are in a unique position to offer clear information and signposting to services.


Sheree said more investment is needed in cancer services to deal with the impact of the pandemic, particularly when it comes to psychological support.

“There are lots of hopes for cancer nursing in the future and more resources are always required especially to ensure we are able to deal with the impact of COVID-19. It has emphasised gaps we were aware of which I feel need to be prioritised especially when dealing with the post COVID-19 impact as many of us are not in the same physical and mental condition. So investment into psychological services as well as nurses and other healthcare professionals is vital.”


Sue Sanderson, Macmillan Partnership Manager for Derbyshire, said: “We are so grateful to all nurses working everywhere for the care, compassion and sheer professionalism they have shown in coping with the additional pressures brought about by the pandemic. At Macmillan we are doing whatever it takes to support our nurses as well as patients and the goodwill and support of the public will help us to achieve that goal.”

If you or someone you love has cancer, the Macmillan Support Line is open seven days a week from 8am to 8pm. For information or just someone to talk to, call 0808 808 00 00 or visit

Listen to Sheree Hall’s interview with North Derbyshire Radio by clicking on link below.

Written by: NDR NEWS

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