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Islanders 'forgoing cancer treatment' over costs

Some islanders are choosing not to receive cancer treatment as they cannot afford the cost of mainland accommodation, a Council meeting has heard.

At a meeting of the Health & Wellbeing Board earlier this month, Mrs Barbara Jones of Healthwatch said the organisation had received "a great many comments" about the need for accommodation at Treliske for cancer patients travelling from the islands, as mainland costs were prohibitive.

She said she had been informed by a resident GP that in some cases people were forgoing cancer treatment as they could not afford the expense of accommodation. The matter has now been referred to the Cornwall Cancer Patient group.

Mrs Jones also reported that the rehabilitation service was not progressing as hoped because users had to be supervised at all times.

Chair of Council Ted Moulson said he had been expecting an announcement on patient transport but was led to believe the outcome "may not be palatable" for local people and would result in a huge negative response.

Cllr Adrian Davis said that in all his years in practice on the islands, he had never encountered such medical transport issues and that the situation must be rectified.


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