A SPECIAL guest marked the success of a new support centre in Solihull, for women being treated for breast cancer.
Junior health minister Steve Brine visited the Breast Cancer Haven which opened in October on St Bernard’s Road in Olton.
The Winchester MP – whose role includes ensuring the implementation of Cancer Strategy across the NHS – said: “It was excellent to visit the haven to show my appreciation to all of the staff for the fantastic support they give to women with breast cancer.
“Breast cancer can be devastating. We know the most important thing for patients is to have the support they need in their local community to help them live well with and beyond cancer.
“Breast Cancer Haven is truly that, a haven which supports so many women who are affected by this disease.”
He added he was delighted when the government awarded the haven – which now has seven branches across the country – some £2.7million raised from the ‘tampon tax’ in 2015.
Chief executive Pamela Healy said: “We were delighted to welcome Steve Brine MP to our newest Breast Cancer Haven. Since opening the West Midlands centre, we have already helped over 200 people affected by breast cancer in this region.
“Having the opportunity to show the MP the centre’s success so far and the positive impact it has had on visitors and their families in the West Midlands filled our team with immense pride.”
The centre – which must raise £60,000 each year to continue its free support service – offers treatments from counselling to acupuncture to around 12,500 breast cancer patients across the county.
Led by a clinical specialist, the haven’s trained professional nurses, therapists and counsellors work closely with NHS partners to help service users and their families cope with the wider impact of breast cancer.
Talking about his role, Mr Brine said: “We have much work still to do, but by 2020 we want the NHS to be a world leader in providing care and treatment for cancer patients.
“That’s why the best part of my job is getting out around the country to places like the haven to see for myself innovative services that are already delivering for patients and can help make our ambition a reality.”
Visit www.breastcancerhaven.org.uk for more details.