Older People Living with Cancer

Peer advocates supporting older people affected by cancer

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Older people at higher risk of emergency cancer diagnosis

Angela Clarkson, Volunteer Coordinator for Sefton Pensioners Advocacy Centre, writes about emergency cancer diagnoses.

Cancer research logo

A recent Cancer Research UK published study has demonstrated that people over 60 have an increased risk of receiving a diagnosis of lung or bowel cancer via emergency hospital admission than younger people.


Worryingly the study highlighted that 11% of emergency lung cancer diagnosis patients, 49% for bowel cancer patients, survived for at least a year compared with 42% of those receiving a doctor’s referral regarding lung cancer and 83% for bowel cancer.SPAC

Angela Clarkson

Angela Clarkson

A number of rationales are put forward as to why older people present later than younger people. These include inability to access their doctor, relating pain and symptoms to other ailments, low mood, and lack of symptom awareness or access to accurate information. Whatever the reason surely we need to know. We are all aware of the importance of early diagnosis and thus understanding why older people are more prone to late diagnosis warrants further research. As Ghandi said “A nation’s greatness is measured by how it treats its oldest members”. I think we are great, let’s prove it.


To read the study in detail click here

Angela Clarkson, Sefton Pensioners Advocacy Centre


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Relay for Life

You may have noticed a comment published after we issued a post about the National Cancer Survivorship Initiative. The person who commented was Pam Bentley and we are happy to help raise awareness about the Relay for Life that Pam is involved in. This is Pam’s original message:

I had breast cancer 26 years ago and survived. I have recently completed 6 months chemotherapy and 4 weeks of radiotherapy, as breast cancer has presented in the second breast.

Since my first diagnosis I have worked tirelessly, raising funds for cancer research, and am currently Survivor Co-ordinator for Bournemouth & East Dorset Relay for Life, being organised by Cancer Research U.K. to be held in Ferndown, for the 7th year in Ferndown on 12th and 13th July, 2014. Details of Relay, as opposed to Race for Life can be found here.

My reason for contacting you is to invite as many cancer survivors, living in the area along to our event.

Relay for Life

Relay for Life

Survivors are NOT asked to fundraise, they are asked to celebrate their survival. To this end survivors take part in the opening lap of honour, and are then invited to a celebratory party, with entertainment (all donated). This takes place as the actual teams begin their 24 hour Relay on Saturday 12th July on the field behind Ferndown Leisure Centre. As mentioned previously full details can be found on our web site.

I have been organising this part of the event since its induction, and all the survivors have enjoyed the occasion, feeling uplifted at seeing so many young people, inspired to fundraise for medical research.

I do hope you are able to publicise this event on our behalf.

Many thanks, Pam Bentley, Survivor Co-ordinator, Bournemouth & East Dorset Relay for Life.

P.S. We are a small, entirely voluntary committee.


We’re happy to support Relay for Life on our blog. Good Luck!