New Information Officer appointed to support patients

Joelle Kirby has been appointed as Mesothelioma UK’s Senior Information Officer, joining the operations team at the national charity’s Leicestershire base.

Joelle’s priorities will be to build on the excellent reputation the charity has for providing information to mesothelioma patients and carers. Joelle will ensure that the information provided by the charity, both online and in print, is relevant, evidence-based and clearly communicated.

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 is a national charity which provides help and support through a network of clinical nurse specialists and through a freephone support line, a comprehensive website and active social media channels.

The need for reliable information is vital for patients and carers, especially those newly diagnosed with mesothelioma.

Joelle is a qualified librarian and spent a number of years working for the NHS as a clinical librarian for both Barts Health NHS Trust London and the Central and North West London NHS Trust. In these roles, she would accompany clinicians on ward rounds and access information to support the medical team and answer patient questions.

It was through this she became interested in health research, in particular making it accessible to as wide an audience as possible.

Joelle went on to work for the Royal Marsden, writing and editing their cancer information. She has also worked in a freelance capacity writing healthcare research summaries, making often complex health information more rapidly understandable.

Commenting on her new role, Joelle said: “I look forward to contributing to the fantastic work that Mesothelioma UK does. We’ve already got an excellent range of patient information and I am keen to help it develop and continue to support those affected by mesothelioma.”

Liz Darlison, Chief Executive Officer at Mesothelioma UK added: “The charity prides itself on being able to offer reliable, accurate and relevant help and support to mesothelioma patients and their families. Joelle will help us to ensure that this is always the case with the information that we make available. Mesothelioma UK is already accredited by the Patient Information Forum and has received the PIF TICK quality mark, demonstrating our commitment to providing information of a high standard.”