02/10/2014

NI Prostate Cancer Services Lacking - Charity

There are not enough services to support men with prostate cancer in Northern Ireland, with many having to deal with life-changing side effects of treatment alone, according to a UK charity.

Prostate Cancer UK is today launching its Quality Checklist in Northern Ireland, which details what men with prostate cancer should expect.

A survey carried out by the charity shows 76% of men who’ve been treated for prostate cancer reported erection problems, 69% a loss of sexual desire and 68% urinary incontinence.

Prostate Cancer UK said there are few support services in place in Northern Ireland to help men affected by the side effects of prostate cancer treatment.

The charity has called on MLAs to work to implement the Quality Checklist for Northern Ireland.

Dr Sarah Cant, Director of Policy and Strategy at Prostate Cancer UK said: "There are critical gaps in prostate cancer support for men in Northern Ireland. They get a raw deal when it comes to getting them through the life changing side effects that can accompany treatment. The Department of Health, Social Services & Public Safety has already said that improving access to rehabilitation and recovery services should be a priority, however progress for prostate cancer patients has been slow.

"As treatments improve, more men than ever will be living through the disease and that makes it even more urgent that the right structures are put in place to support them. Today we are calling on MLAs to back our Quality Checklist by working with their local Health and Social Care Trusts to provide top quality support for all men with prostate cancer. The time for action is now."

(IT/CD)

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