Monday, 15 April 2024
Monday, 15 April 2024

Blood cancer patients benefit from Hywel Dda health Charities funding

THANKS to charity donations, two new trainee Haematology Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNSs) covering Pembrokeshire and Ceredigion are having a positive impact on the experience of blood cancer patients in the two counties. 

The CNSs are funded by Hywel Dda Health Charities, the official charity of Hywel Dda University Health Board, with 50 per cent match funding for the Pembrokeshire CNS provided from the Withybush Cancer Day Unit Appeal Fund.

Haematology CNSs deliver specialist care to blood cancer patients. Around 80 patients in the area have a diagnosis of blood cancer within a calendar year.

The Haematology CNS Team act as key workers for patients from the point of diagnosis, building strong therapeutic relationships with the patient and their family and acting as a central source of support.

The initiative gives the two trainee CNSs the opportunity to shadow existing nurse specialists, take part in training programmes, and visit similar specialist teams across south Wales. The aim is to increase the knowledge base and safeguard skills within the clinical nursing teams.

The charitable funds pay for two Haematology CNS trainees for three days per week for a three-year period. The CNSs are currently eight months into the programme.

Gina Beard, Lead Cancer Nurse for Hywel Dda University Health Board, said:

“The two CNSs are not only significantly improving the patient experience throughout their care pathway; they are also ensuring the sustainability of the haematology service in our more rural localities.

“Recent figures show a particularly high number of vacancies for haematology nurses in Wales. Current service provision within the health board is fragile, and these two posts are intended to assist with future-proofing the service.

“The Macmillan Wales Cancer Patient Experience Survey shows that patients with access to a CNS report a significantly better experience. The ongoing provision of the CNS role for patients with blood cancer provides the perfect opportunity to improve the patient experience in the health board area.” 

Nicola Llewelyn, Head of Hywel Dda Health Charities, said:

“We are so pleased to be able to fund posts such as these which bring such tangible and sustainable benefits to patients.

“The support of our local communities enables us to provide services over and above what the NHS can provide in the three counties of Hywel Dda and we are extremely grateful for every donation we receive to make a positive difference to the health, well-being and experience of NHS patients, service users and staff.”

For more details about the charity and how you can help, please visit:


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