Date Published: 5 July 2010

Publication of Report: Building Effective Cancer Support Services in Ireland

Health News from Ireland

The Irish Cancer Society has recently published a major report entitled "Building Effective Cancer Support Services in Ireland".


The National Cancer Control Programme of the HSE published a document called "A Strategy for Cancer Control in Ireland" in 2006. This strategy recognised the need for good psycho-social support as part of an integrated and cohesive approach to cancer which ultimately will improve the quality of life for patients and their families.

The strategy made several recommendations including that the Irish Cancer Society expand its role to become an umbrella body to which all support groups/centres and peer support programmes are affiliated.

Further, the report acknowledged the following points:

  1. The role of the voluntary sector is essential in the development of supportive care for cancer patients.
  2. In Ireland, the majority of supportive care is delivered in the community by independent voluntary groups.
  3. Groups were developed in response to a local need and are autonomous.

In response to this report, and as part of its own 5 year strategy, the Irish Cancer Society undertook to accept the recommendations and we began to work on a project entitled “Building Effective Cancer Support Services in Ireland”. Funding was secured through the Pfizer Global Health Partnerships programme.

A steering committee was formed made up of representatives of the voluntary and statutory bodies. As the project moved forward, the committee expanded to include all representatives from cancer support services who were interested in joining. In addition, it was imperative to try to reach everyone who was providing supportive care for cancer patients.

Work began with a scoping study to identify all service providers in Ireland. All potential partners were sent a formal letter of invitation to participate in the study. Every effort was made to ensure a face to face interview wherever possible. Telephone interviews were conducted where face to face was not possible. The findings of that study were published in January 2010.

Access the Full Report:

You can download "Building Effective Cancer Support Services in Ireland" by clicking here (PDF, 1.8MB, 28 pages).


Source: The Irish Cancer Society..

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