|Marie who spent months as LINC patient.|
LINC Supports You in Your Illness. By Dr Gill Rouse
The Leukaemia and Intensive Chemotherapy Fund is a local charity that gives total support to leukaemia, lymphoma and other cancer patients who are treated within Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
The treatment of leukaemia differs from that of other cancers in that it involves a long stay in hospital receiving intensive chemotherapy, followed by either a stem cell or bone marrow transplant. Overall, the patient could be in hospital anything up to 6 months.
During that time, the patient is likely to be in one of the 8 ensuite isolation units – a very small area which will be home for the next few months.
LINC starts its care by providing welcome toiletry packs – leukaemia patients often come into hospital without prior warning so we provide simple things like toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, tissues until they have sorted themselves out.
We have also been instrumental in providing a broadband facility, televisions, sky TV, DVD players, individual fridges , reclining chairs – anything that helps to make the long stay in hospital more bearable.
The charity also provides financial care – being ill is always expensive especially if you are self-employed. Whilst the patient may be in hospital, life goes on and there are bills to be paid. LINC has helped with housing rents, mortgages, child care, travel expenses, dog walking and on one occasion, new pyjamas. Two LINC funded clinical psychologists give emotional support to patients, families and staff.
Marie (pictured top left) spent many months as a LINC patient in isolation receiving intensive chemotherapy before her successful stem cell transplant. As a nurse herself, Marie had to become a patient overnight following her diagnosis but remained a positive inspiration throughout her treatment.
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