Charities fund clinical nurse specialist to support asbestos-related cancer patients in the South East

Working in partnership with national charity, Mesothelioma UK, HASAG and the Mavis Nye Foundation will fund Louise Gilham’s post as a Mesothelioma UK clinical nurse specialist, based at Maidstone Hospital and Tunbridge Wells Hospital/Kent Oncology Centre.

Mesothelioma is a cancer related to exposure to asbestos and predominantly affects the lining of the lungs. The UK has the highest incidence of the disease in the world with around 2,700 people diagnosed each year.

Mesothelioma UK funds over 30 clinical nurse specialists around the country and partners with organisations such as HASAG and the Mavis Nye Foundation to fund some of these posts.

By extending the support of Louise’s post, Mesothelioma UK can continue to provide patients in the Kent and Medway Cancer Alliance region with a clinical nurse specialist – a vital resource for people with this disease.

Louise, who has been a nurse for almost 35 years and a Mesothelioma UK nurse at Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust/Kent Oncology Centre for five years, provides clinical care for patients and will also support the teams of healthcare professionals throughout Kent helping to optimise patient access to treatments and promoting clinical trials.

Lynne Squibb co-founder of HASAG commented: “HASAG is so proud to part fund five Mesothelioma UK nurses across the region, the newest addition being Louise Gilham’s post at Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells Hospital/Kent Oncology Centre. This post is in partnership with The Mavis Nye Foundation who we are delighted to work with.

“Louise has attended HASAG’s East Sussex coffee mornings since they started, providing specialist support and advice for those who attend. We are so pleased that we will continue to work closely with Louise and her team, offering our support to those who need it. We are also so grateful to The Mavis Nye Foundation for this joint partnership and delighted to continue our close working relationship with Mesothelioma UK.”

Dr. Mavis Nye (Hon) BEM BCA., CEO of the Mavis Nye Foundation added: “I am delighted that the Foundation are able to support another nurse post for Mesothelioma UK who do so much to support patients with this terrible disease which can and should be preventable. Without these key nurses, patients would not benefit from the specialist care they need at such a difficult time following diagnosis. Mesothelioma UK and the Mavis Nye Foundation have a shared goal of providing care, support and hope for patients both now and for their future.”

Leah Taylor, Mesothelioma UK Head of Nursing added: “Mesothelioma UK is so grateful to HASAG and the Mavis Nye Foundation for providing the funding for Louise’s post. Collaborating with other charities with shared goals means that our charities can help even more mesothelioma patients and their families. We’re delighted that Louise will continue to be an invaluable source of information and support to patients, families, and also to her healthcare colleagues in the Kent and Medway Cancer Alliance area.”

HASAG was founded in 2006 by Diane Salisbury and Lynne Squibb in memory of their father who suffered from mesothelioma, to raise awareness and offer support to others. Mavis Nye, who is living with mesothelioma, set up her foundation to inspire people with the asbestos-related, terminal cancer.

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