Why Write This Site?
LIVESTRONG , the American cancer charity, says “We believe in information – not pity”.
This was exactly what I wanted when I got cancer. 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 – and understanding and help for what my body was going through, especially handling poisons contained in cancer drugs.
Strangely, help was difficult to obtain. All the charity adverts on TV tell us”we are there for you”, but cancer charities in Britain tend to follow the NHS line, and this service is one of worst in Europe for dealing with cancer issues. Every major survey of European post-cancer survival rates places UK at bottom of table, but try to find out what is happening in America or Europe, and 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 then, when the NHS was ‘young’ and under Matron’s wise guidance. In the days before ‘outcomes’, MDTs, tick boxes and computers – when the Patient was at the heart of treatment; not made to feel we were on a production line, to be abandoned once this reached going-home time.
Instead, so much of what we are offered today is pity – asking us to tell our story, etc. Getting practical, solid facts to make an informed decision can be difficult; doctors often don’t have time to answer 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.
Once hospital treatment is over, patients often talk of feeling ‘abandoned’, and we can find it difficult to obtain information about where to find medically-approved help for the many long-term drug side effects, although researchers now tell us it can take years for these to develop. When they do, it can be almost impossible to find products developed in other countries to help their cancer patients. So I decided to write about what we could get, and help people to buy over-the-counter products.
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.
Back to work
Finished with surgery,etc., I have to get back to earning a living. Cancer has left me weak, but my brain (such as it is) still functions, so when I found my blog getting lots of interest, I thought I would use it to bring in money – to run it, keep myself going, and indulge myself in being able to contribute to favourite charities. As I can’t travel easily, I need to earn a living somehow, so as others seem to like what I write about, I aim to join the world of blogging for a living.
My name, Verite: it’s 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.