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Communications TeamNews, Queen's Centre

Phenomenal’ response to call to help cancer patients

Nurses have praised the generosity of local people following an appeal to help patients undergoing cancer treatment.

Following a letter written to the Hull Daily Mail and a supporting appeal through social media last week, hundreds of bags of boiled sweets have been delivered to the Queen’s Centre at Castle Hill Hospital in Cottingham.

Patients, visitors, staff and members of the public have been dropping off the goodies in varying quantities, from the odd quarter of humbugs right through to huge corporate deliveries.

Boiled sweets are offered to patients undergoing chemotherapy treatment to help mask the metallic taste it can sometimes cause.

Chemotherapy Day Unit Sister, Debbie Simpson, says staff and patients have been overwhelmed by the outpouring of public support:

“We see between 60 and 80 patients every day in the day unit, and patients can attend anywhere from once a week to once every month. Chemotherapy treatment can lead to patients experiencing a nasty, almost metallic taste in the mouth, and so one of the ways patients can avoid this is to suck on a boiled sweet during the session.

“Other than the odd donation we receive here and there, we generally use charitable funds to buy sweets, and this can cost us in the region of £350 per month as we like to able to offer a selection to our patients including sugar free options.

“The response from the public to this recent appeal for donations has been phenomenal. Staff have simply been overwhelmed by the outpouring of support for our patients and people’s willingness to help us provide a better experience for them. We’ve had supermarkets donating and people contacting us from outside the area with offers of help; it’s created a real feel good factor.

“On behalf of the unit and our patients, we’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone who has made a donation, large or small, to help people undergoing cancer treatment in our hospital.”

Donations of both normal and sugar-free boiled sweets are still welcome. Please note however that sweets must be individually wrapped or bagged; loose boiled sweets in paper bags are regrettably unable to be used.

Donations can either be made direct to the Queen’s Centre reception or for corporate donations, please contact David Haire, Project Director for Fundraising on (01482) 674033.