Mesothelioma UK awards funding for research into improving follow-up care for patients

Mesothelioma UK has awarded a grant for £25,000 for research into improving follow up care for UK patients with mesothelioma, the asbestos-related cancer.

Dr Catherine Henshall

The recipient of the grant is Dr Catherine Henshall, Senior Nursing Research Fellow at Oxford Brookes University, who will carry out a study to identify best practice for patient follow-up care to help them to lead fulfilling lives and ‘live well’ with their condition.

Mesothelioma UK is committed to supporting research into all aspects of treatment and care related to mesothelioma. The charity works with the National Lung Cancer Forum for Nurses (NLCFN) to make funding available for an NLCFN member or group of members to undertake a small scale research study, a complex audit or a preliminary enquiry to support a larger grant application.

Around 2,700 people in the UK are diagnosed with mesothelioma, an incurable cancer caused by exposure to asbestos, each year.

Dr Henshall’s new study will involve interviews with patients to identify any common themes around what constitutes living well. Studies involving patients with other long-term conditions have highlighted patients’ need for self-esteem and reliable professional and peer support, retaining personal responsibility and preserving identity. The study will investigate if these findings apply to mesothelioma patients or if there are unique factors that enable them to live well.

Commenting on the study Dr Henshall said: “We are delighted to have received this funding from Mesothelioma UK and the NLCFN which will enable us to explore mesothelioma patients’ experiences of follow up care. This will enable us to make informed recommendations for policy and practice, and to propose preferred, patient focused, follow-up services that are evidence-based, collaborative and inclusive.

“We are committed to working closely and in partnership with Mesothelioma UK throughout this project to ensure that the best outcomes for mesothelioma patients are identified and promoted, and to make a real and lasting difference to mesothelioma patient care and service delivery.”

Liz Darlison, Mesothelioma UK Director of Services said: “Mesothelioma UK is delighted to continue working in partnership with the NLCFN Research Interest Group to provide annual grants that support nurse-led mesothelioma research. We are grateful to the charity’s supporters whose valuable contributions make this possible. Follow up care in Mesothelioma is varied across the UK so this study will provide very useful clinical evidence to influence care and services. We wish Dr Henshall and her research team every success and look forward to helping to evaluate and disseminate findings in due course.”

Professor Angela Tod, who sat on the selection panel for the award, commented: “Members of the NLCFN committee and Research Interest Group reviewed the applications and we are delighted to have selected Catherine Henshall’s project on Mesothelioma patients’ experiences of follow-up care across three NHS Trusts. We are confident this study will generate very valuable insights into the patient experience. The fact that it is a multi-site study will add to the rigour and transferability of the findings.”

Dr Henshall will carry out her study from the Oxford School of Nursing and Midwifery at Oxford Brookes University.

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