Macmillan: Charity reports surge in crisis calls among cancer patients
Macmillan Cancer Support is launching an emergency appeal in response to the escalating financial distress among thousands of people with cancer in Wales.
The leading cancer support charity reports a concerning increase in individuals contacting its support line with financial worries and significant mental health concerns – a 33% rise so far in 2023 compared to 2022.
The charity’s recent data covering the past 18 months reveals that approximately 22% of people with cancer in Wales are living on a low income.
Among this group, a staggering one in three (35%) are struggling to pay basic living costs – equating to an estimated 14,000 individuals across Wales.
Macmillan’s further data shows almost two in five (37%) people with cancer in Wales, affected by the cost-of-living crisis, are being forced to cut back on basic hygiene or cleaning essentials.
Some are resorting to drastic measures, such as skipping meals, washing using buckets, or missing hospital appointments, which could severely impact their health and potentially affect survival chances.
Previous research by Macmillan found that cancer can come with a significant financial impact, averaging almost £900 a month in addition to usual outgoings.
This includes extra travel for appointments, higher energy costs during treatment, or loss of income for many unable to work.
Richard Manson, a representative from Macmillan Cancer Support, speaks daily to people with cancer who are making heart-breaking financial choices and taking drastic measures to survive.
He highlights the severe distress people are facing, such as washing in buckets to save on bills or choosing between feeding their children and attending life-saving appointments.
Macmillan’s new initiative, the ‘Winter Gift Guide’, part of their Emergency Grants Appeal, is launched to help those in need. The Gift Guide showcases essential items many living with cancer need but can’t afford, and the impact a Macmillan Grant can have.
Macmillan Grants are one-off payments aimed at helping with the extra costs of living with cancer. The charity urges those who can to donate to the Emergency Grants Appeal via the Gift Guide to support more people during this difficult winter.
For those worried about the financial impact of cancer, Macmillan provides a variety of support options at www.macmillan.org.uk. The charity is a crucial source of help, offering both financial and emotional support to those in need.
With Macmillan’s support line receiving over 64,000 calls about financial worries this year, a 12% increase from 2022, the charity’s appeal and support services are more vital than ever.
As Macmillan continues to assist those affected by cancer, their efforts emphasise the importance of community support and the urgent need for donations during these challenging times.
Find out more about the appeal here: https://www.macmillan.org.uk/winter-gift-guide
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