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Support at home for you and your family

Most people who have treatment for skin cancer need very little help during or once they have finished treatment. For those that do there is care and support available. 

GP and nursing support

Contact your GP for help with any medical problems that come up when you're at home. They can also make referrals to nursing services for you. There are different types of nursing services.

District nurses

District nurses can:

  • give medicines or injections
  • check temperature, blood pressure and breathing
  • clean and dress wounds
  • monitor or set up drips
  • give emotional support
  • teach basic caring skills to family members where needed
  • get special equipment, such as commodes or bed pans

Community specialist palliative care nurses

Community specialist palliative care nurses include Macmillan nurses and hospice nurses. They specialise in advice about pain control, sickness and other symptoms of cancer. They also give emotional support to you and your carers.

Social workers

Social workers can arrange:

  • home helps to help with shopping or housework
  • home care assistants for washing and dressing
  • meals on wheels
  • respite care

Your social worker can also help with money matters by checking you get all the benefits you are entitled to. Or they can advise you about charity grants for things like extra heating costs or special diets.

Contact a social worker yourself by getting in touch with your local social services office. Or ask your hospital nurse or your GP to refer you.

Local support services

There are many other sorts of help you can get. Services vary from place to place.

Sometimes local voluntary groups offer sitting services. Someone comes to stay with you while your relative goes out.

Good neighbour schemes offer befriending or practical help with shopping or transport.

Local cancer support groups often offer practical help. And they are a good source of information about services in your area. Ask your doctor or nurse about local groups.

The NHS ave a search function on their website for local cancer information and support services. 

Cancer Research UK nurses

For support and information, you can call the Cancer Research UK information nurses on freephone 0808 800 4040, from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday. They can give advice about who can help you and what kind of support is available.

We also have a discussion forum called Cancer Chat. It's a free online forum for people affected by cancer. It's a safe space to talk to other people in similar situations and find information and support.

Last reviewed: 
23 Oct 2019
  • Improving supportive and palliative care for adults with cancer
    National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), March 2004

  • Oxford Textbook of Palliative Medicine (5th Edition)
    NI Cherny and others
    Oxford University Press, 2015

  • NHS website
    Accessed October 2019

  • One Chance To Get It Right. Improving people's experience of care in the last few days and hours of life. 
    Leadership Alliance for the Care of Dying People, June 2014

     

Information and help