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Bevan Exemplar Cohort 7 Projects

Cancer related fatigue (CRF): new road map for patients and health care professionals (HCPs)

Jackie Pottle

Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board

Cancer related fatigue (CRF) affects between 65-90% of people who have or have had cancer (Bower, 2014, Fabi et al 2020). It Is commonly associated with cancer and its treatments and adds to the difficulties of trying to cope with cancer, with over two thirds describing symptoms as severe for at least 6 months.  One third of patients report persistent fatigue for many years post treatment

Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board (BCUHB) Holistic Needs Assessment summaries for 2019-2021 support the importance and impact on Quality of life across all tumour sites. Co- production with patients via North Cancer Patient Forum supported the need for innovative ways of supporting within the constraints of Covid.

Project Aims and Objectives:

  • To develop an effective patient- centred service to support patients and HCPs with CRF and implement long term coping strategies.
  • To develop easy access to evidence based resources for HCPs and patients.
  • To provide stratified CRF levels of support to patients.
  • To upskill HCPs to support stratified levels of CRF.
  • To share skills across Wales and UK.
  • To secure funds to sustain service for long -term support of patients & HCPs.

Project Outcomes:

  • A new innovative CRF service  was developed to support patients and upskill HCPs across primary and secondary care.
  • Innovative intro of remote videogroup clinics to support wider range of patients.
  • Sustained funding to continue service for another year.
  • Sharing of knowledge via Welsh cancer network conferences/ newsletter / publication ( BMJ blog ) ; UK wide mesothelioma support group / Lead nurse/AHP conference.
  • BCUHB, Macmillan Excellence and Moonlight Cancer charity innovation awards.

Project Impact:

90 patients supported in 12 months

PROM showed:-

  • 85% reduction in concerns
  • 85 % increase in wellbeing
  • 120 HCPs – education sessions

Described by patients as a ” road map “ to controlling CRF and “essential “ to HCPs.