A terminal cancer patient from Sleaford is backing plans for a new cancer support centre by the charity making a positive impact on his life.
Peter Camfield is living with incurable prostate cancer and says the Macmillan Cancer Support team based at Lincoln County Hospital is helping him and his family to get on with their lives.
He is now backing plans for a new modernised support centre at the hospital.
Father-of-two Peter was first diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2010 and received radiotherapy treatment. However, in 2017 the cancer returned and Peter was given just two to three years to live.
As soon as he received the diagnosis he went to see Macmillan cancer information and support facilitator Beverley Gambles, who is based at the hospital.
Peter, 65, said: “It has obviously been a shock, but we are feeling quite positive and are just getting on with our lives and living life to the full. Macmillan is helping us to do that. Bev was lovely. She signposted us to financial help which made a big difference. We didn’t realise we’d be eligible for extra benefits. It’s very useful to have a little bit of extra money coming in, as it’s just one less worry and means we can go away for the weekend or get a dog as we did last year. It allows us to get on with life.
“Bev really helped my wife Sue as well, who was coming to terms with having a husband who was going to die.”
Peter’s wife Sue added: “We were knocked off our feet by the news but speaking to Bev made a huge difference. It calmed me down. When Peter was diagnosed I didn’t want to be more than an hour away from home so we could be close to the oncologist and the hospital. But now we’ve been to Amsterdam and have a few days away somewhere every month. Macmillan told us life doesn’t end. It’s thanks to Bev that we’ve been able to live the life we wanted.”
Macmillan is working with United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust to develop the new centre for people living with cancer in Lincolnshire. It is due to open in the summer, and will have enough space for a range of services in one location. These will include cancer information, emotional support, welfare benefits advice, practical support and signposting to support groups and other services.
A spokesman for Macmillan said the current centre is too small for them to offer a full service, operating out of one small room that is difficult to find in the hospital. Funded by Macmillan, the new centre will be relocated to the main outpatients entrance, and include a large area to display information and resources, a quiet room for patients and their families to speak to a member of the support team, and a group activity room which could be used by support groups or for other services, such as wig fitting.
There are currently 27,826 people living with cancer in Lincolnshire.