Twitter handle: @c_finchett
Patient/Carer or NHS Staff: NHS Staff
Condition or job title: Tobacco Dependence Specialist
Place of treatment/care or workplace: Greater Manchester Cancer and The Christie
I am a tobacco dependence specialist working with Greater Manchester Cancer and based at The Christie NHS Foundation Trust.
My work involves supporting cancer patients at all stages of their cancer pathway to stop smoking, from diagnosis through to treatment and follow-up. I also chair a Greater Manchester Cancer sub-committee dedicated to cancer prevention through smoking cessation and do some work with local schools and the community to encourage them to reduce their risk.
I am an ex-smoker myself, successfully stopping 8 years ago following a lifetime of smoking, and know first-hand how challenging this can be.
I have worked at The Christie since the age of 17, but started this role seven years ago, following emerging evidence that patients with cancers of the head and neck have a significantly increased chance of cure, and lower treatment-related side-effects, if they are able to stop smoking.
My role has continued to expand, and now includes supporting patients that are dependent on tobacco, alcohol or drugs. I now work with patients affected by head and neck, lung, gynaecological and breast cancers.
I work as part of a multi-disciplinary team including doctors, nurses, radiographers, dieticians, speech & language therapists and psychologists to offer a holistic approach to patients who require extra support at what is an extremely difficult time.
I am passionate about improving outcomes for all patients, and truly believe that with support, anyone can see the benefits of stopping smoking, for their families and themselves.