CLIC Sargent commissioned Insley Consulting to carry out a follow up to The New Normal report published in July 2015. The Stand by Me report is an assessment of the needs of young people with cancer and the important people in their lives.
This report builds on and independent evaluation - The New Normal: Evaluation of our social care (enhanced) service for young people carried out between March and June 2015. The purpose of the needs assessment is to test the conclusions of the evaluation, by engaging with young people with cancer in order that their self-expressed needs can inform the development of the young people service.
The report has given focus to areas for service development from the perspective of those who have received the service, those who have not and family members of young people with cancer.
Some of the key highlights for us showed:
- Emotional need was the largest area of need. 80% of young people described themselves as suffering from anxiety and/or depression. Coping with the side effects of treatment was cited as the most stressful part of the cancer experience.
- The second largest area of need for young people with cancer was finances. One young person said, "It made the whole (cancer) journey a lot more stressful, as on top of health worries I was worrying about money and how I was gonna afford things." 75% of young people we spoke to received state benefits, however 94% of these young people said they had experienced problems accessing benefits.
- The findings also revealed the significant impact a young person’s cancer diagnosis can have on partners and family. Family relationships were often strained with cancer coming between a young person’s desire to be independent from their family. And 95% of young people felt their cancer diagnosis impacted their siblings. One young person said, "My brother was destroyed."
Stand By Me presentation
CLIC Sargent is planning to review the recommendations arising from The New Normal report and the Stand by Me report and how best to move these forward. We will use this information to improve our evidence base and consider how we can develop our service model to best meet the needs of young people.
Thank you to the young people, their partners, family and friends for taking the time to speak to our independent consultants, Insley. Thank you also to CLIC Sargent staff who supported this process and our colleagues from other organisations who were interviewed as part of this research.