A pair of giant inflatable lungs will form the centrepiece of a two-day lung cancer awareness raising event to help publicise a new drop in chest X-ray service in Middlesbrough.
The Mega Lungs exhibit, which measures 12ft high by 15ft wide and 10ft long, allows visitors to step inside the human lung model, learn about the various structures and normal lung functions and observe examples of lung trauma and disease.
Two events have been organised, the first at Middlesbrough’s Dundas shopping centre on Thursday 10 November, and Tesco in Grangetown on Friday 11 November, both from 10am to 4pm, to coincide with National Lung Cancer Awareness Month.
In Middlesbrough and Redcar & Cleveland, lung cancer is the most common cause of cancer death for both men and women.
Chest X-ray pilot launched
The events will promote the launch of the drop in chest X-ray service at The James Cook University Hospital and the One Life Centre on Linthorpe Road.
The chest X-ray pilot has been developed as a partnership between Macmillan Cancer Support, South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Middlesbrough Council, South Tees Clinical Commissioning Group and the Tees Valley Public Health Shared Service.
The scheme remains at the pilot stage but makes it easier for people with symptoms of poor lung health to get help and treatment.
To get an appointment members of the public need to have one or more of the following symptoms:
- a cough lasting more than three weeks
- chest pain lasting more than three weeks
- coughing up blood
And they must also be a current smoker, aged over 50 and not have had a chest X-ray in the last three months.
Dr Vytis Dudzevicius, lead clinician for lung cancer at the trust said: “This service provides easier access to chest x-rays for people living in more deprived areas where there is a higher prevalence of the risk factors for lung cancer.
“We hope it will encourage people to get any symptoms checked out as soon as possible so we can detect the disease in its early stages, while it is still treatable and potentially curable.
“Unfortunately, up to 80% of patients currently present with advanced stage lung cancer and only approximately 65% of them are able to receive active treatment for cancer.”
The pilot is part of the Macmillan Integration of Cancer Care Programme.
Cllr Julia Rostron, Middlesbrough Council’s Executive Member for Adult Health and Social Care, said: “Lung Cancer is the second most common cancer in men and women found in the UK and research has shown that 89% of lung cancers are preventable.
“The main preventable risk factors for developing this cancer are smoking, certain occupational exposures and ionising radiation.
“We would encourage anyone with concerns for themselves or a loved one, or who just want to know more about keeping themselves and their lungs healthy, to drop by the exhibit.”
For more information visit www.reduce-your-risk.co.uk
About the Macmillan Integration of Cancer Care Programme
The Macmillan Integration of Cancer Care Programme has taken a close look at existing pathways from pre-diagnosis through to recovery, survivorship and end of life care. This includes how patients move through the whole healthcare system looking at how all the separate services can work more closely to deliver the right care, in the right place, at the right time, by the right professional.
A review has focussed on three cancer pathways – lung, lymphoma and brain and central nervous system. Simplified care pathways, streamlined referral processes and care closer to home have been identified as key ways of helping patients.