Oncology and Palliative Care

Macmillan Clinical Psychology and Counselling Service
Clinical Health Psychology
Hengrave House
Torbay Hospital
Lowes Bridge
Torquay TQ2 7AA

Tel: 01803 654906 / 654654 (answerphone)

Providing a specialist psychology service to cancer patients, their families and the wider cancer team.

We are a small team and aim to provide a Clinical Health Psychology service to those with a cancer diagnosis throughout their cancer journey (diagnosis, during treatments, post-treatment phase and palliative care). We also support the wider cancer teams in their psychological working, thinking and practice.

Psychological support in cancer services

There are a wide range of supports on offer in cancer services, with increasing levels of specialism and skill.

All patients and carers will have opportunities to have their concerns listened to by members of the cancer team. The Cancer Support Team (e.g. Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS), dieticians, radiographers, Speech and Language Therapists, Chaplaincy etc.) will have additional expertise to help you identify concerns and help with basic strategies for mild psychological difficulties.

The Lodge Cancer Support Centre also offer emotional support (listening and support service) sessions and can sign-post you to other sources of support and help, including an array of useful guides from Macmillan, complimentary therapies, financial advisors, wig clinics, etc.

For those that have completed treatments, there are Moving-on Groups available to support you with the key psychological and practical challenges after treatment. These are led jointly by a Psychological therapist and CNS.

There are also other health and wellbeing events held as part of the Living with and beyond cancer program (Recovery Package). You can find out more about these from The Lodge Cancer Support Centre or your CNS.

Where cancer related psychological distress is impacting negatively on your quality of life and where it is felt formal psychological therapies are warranted, referral to The Macmillan Clinical Psychology Service will be made.

Typical difficulties we work with include:

  • Psychological distress associated with cancer (anxiety, depression, low mood, body-image concerns, trauma reactions.)
  • Preparing for medical procedures, surgery or admission
  • Coping with a diagnosis or cancer treatments
  • Hospital/needle phobias
  • Decision making around treatment and surgery
  • Problematic side-effects of treatment (e.g. nausea, pain)

What we do

Direct ways of working (inpatients and outpatients)

  • Psychological Assessment: You will meet us initially for an assessment and to see if psychological therapy could be useful.
  • Pre-surgical Assessments: These help people explore decision making around surgery.
  • Individual Psychological Therapies: We provide a range of psychological therapies for cancer related psychological distress. Your therapists will discuss with you what is on offer and what they think could be helpful.
  • Moving on Groups (MOG): The Breast Care MOG and MOG for all other cancer sites have been delivered by the Psychology service.

Indirect ways of working

We also offer Consultation, Reflective Practice Groups, and teaching and training to support our colleagues in their psychological support skills.

Accessing psychological therapies

If you would like to access our service, please speak to your CNS, Consultant, GP or enquire about psychological supports available at The Lodge Cancer Support Centre. They can all make a referral to us for a psychological assessment of your needs. All referrals are discussed on a weekly basis in our referrals meetings.

We accept referrals where:

  • There is a confirmed cancer diagnosis and where care is delivered by a local cancer Consultant or key worker
  • The psychological distress is related to cancer
  • Consent has been gained for referral and the person is seeking a psychological approach to the difficulties.

At your first appointment

Link to patient information leaflet

We currently offer clinics at the following locations:

  • The Lodge Cancer Support Centre
  • Crowthorne Therapies Unit at Torbay Hospital
  • Newton Abbot Hospital
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