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Gloucestershire Business News

Urgent appeal to keep mobile cancer care on the road

The safety of thousands of cancer patients requiring critical treatment is at increased risk without the means to receive care away from hospitals currently caring for COVID-19 patients, warns an NHS consultant oncologist.

Hope for Tomorrow, the Gloucestershire-based charity which provides Mobile Cancer Care Units to NHS Trusts across the country, has launched an urgent appeal for donations as it struggles to meet increased demand and plummeting funds.

Each of the charity's 11 Mobile Cancer Care Units costs £198 per day to run, providing a safe facility for NHS staff to provide chemotherapy and other treatments for cancer patients, whose immune systems are often severely weakened.

Hope for Tomorrow says that it relies totally on voluntary donations as it doesn't receive any government funding, but since the coronavirus outbreak began it has seen an 84 per cent drop in income due to the cancellation of fundraising events.

That's why the charity has launched an emergency appeal to raise £59,400 to keep all 11 Mobile Cancer Care Units on the road during April, providing cancer care treatments in the safest possible environment for patients with severely depleted immunity.

Dr Sean Elyan

Dr Sean Elyan, consultant oncologist and Hope for Tomorrow chairman, said: "Our approach of delivering cancer care in mobile clinics, often in locations closer to patients' homes, has never been more important than now, sparing patients and their families trips to hospital which could put them at risk. The COVID-19 virus poses a huge risk to already vulnerable cancer patients during their treatment.

"Hope for Tomorrow and our dedicated NHS Trust partners are tirelessly doing everything we can to support cancer patients through these trying times, to keep them safe and alleviate the added stress the virus creates, but we urgently need donations to continue.

"We know that many members of the public are facing financial pressures of their own, so we ask that if anyone can spare just a few pounds, they can be a part of something that makes a big difference to our NHS, vulnerable patients and their families. People can also help by spreading the word about our campaign.

"Thank you, on behalf of all the nurses, clinicians, patients and their families relying on Hope for Tomorrow."

To make a donation visit https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/hft-urgentappeal-covid19

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