Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board
Aim: To establish a Health Visiting cancer framework
There is currently no Cancer Framework within health visiting in the United Kingdom. Health Visitors are specialist public health nurses and offer a universal reach to all families with children under five years of age. Their role is one that enables early identification and prevention. They are in a prime position to engage with a population that are not accessing the service because of illness and can offer added value to early identification and prevention. This will enable us to move away from having a reactive conversation at time of symptoms or signs or disease to one of increased awareness of prevention, screening and ‘what to do if’.
This innovative approach builds on both their position working with families but also the unique opportunity they have by making every contact count and discussing five cancers that have been identified as the most common and ones that have early warning signs and screening. The non-threatening, non-targeted approach from a service offered to all families makes this framework one that is non-judgemental on lifestyles but can initiate behaviour change through its delivery, enabling early identification and signposting to either screening or further interventions. The approach will raise awareness and makes the 5C’s part of everyday conversations.
To successfully implement this forward-looking plan, innovative strategies will need to be employed.
It is vital that the foundations are built on co-production with stakeholders, health visitors and families to develop a meaningful Cancer Framework. To produce a framework that enabled families to become more aware of. Raising awareness of the signs and symptoms and screening programmes of the the 5C’s, dispelling myths and enabling signpost to further information and appropriate services.