Why Write This Site?

LIVESTRONG , the American cancer charity, say “We believe in information – not pity”.

This was exactly what I wanted to hear. I did NOT want “poor you” comments.  Neither did I want advice on eating miracle foods, nor Alternative treatments.  What I did want was sensible, down-to-earth medically-approved advice based on clinical trials and scientific evidence.

In Britain, healthcare is under-funded.  Doctors and nurses don’t have time to give us the attention they would like, so often ‘little’ things, that might make our lives easier, aren’t discussed.  

Verite CollinsCharities say “we are there for you”, but in Britain they tend to follow the NHS line, even though surveys of European post-cancer survival rates places UK at bottom of the table,.  If you try to find out what is happening in America or Europe, you come up against a brick wall.

When I had polio I discussed my treatment with my Consultant and nurses, asking questions and evaluating possible courses of action.  But that was the 50s, when the NHS  was ‘young’ and under Matron’s wise guidance.  It was before ‘outcomes’, MDTs, tick boxes and computers.  The Patient was at the heart of treatment; not made to feel we were on a production line.

I don’t know about you, but I don’t find stories of “my cancer journey” much use.  I need practical, solid facts to make an informed decision.  Doctors often don’t have time to answer my questions or discuss options. As side effects from drugs kicked in, I found there was an impenetrable barrier, with medics unable to allocate enough time to discuss options.  The worst was after starting on Tamoxifen my body burst out with bloody skin blisters (skin lesions) all over, and the hospital Dermatologist dismissed this as “it’s your age”.

Once hospital treatment is over, patients often talk of feeling ‘abandoned’.  It can be difficult to obtain information about medically-approved help for long-term drug side effects, and almost impossible to find products developed to help with these long-term conditions.  So I decided to write about what help we could get, and that is what this website is all about. 

So my website has gradually become an outlet for what I have learnt, and where we can buy helpful products in Britain. Sadly, just because a product has been developed in cancer hospitals abroad, doesn’t mean that NICE will approve it; companies have to pay a huge amount for their approval.  Many products have been approved in major hospitals abroad, without having to pay NICE; since they have better survival rates than the UK, they are obviously doing something right.

N.B.. I  am NOT medically qualified – so ask your GP, Oncologist or CNS if I mention something and you need to check.

My name, Verite: is Huguenot. and means TRUTH. So I try to live up to this and ensure that I search out the truth behind all the claims for treatments.

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