5 Minutes with…Clare Griffin

Friends of the Cancer Centre very proudly supports staff across all areas of cancer services. There are hundreds of health professionals across cancer services who are dedicated to supporting you throughout your diagnosis, treatment and into survivorship.

One of those people is Clare Griffin, clinical specialist physiotherapist at the NI Cancer Centre. Clare works as part of the physiotherapy team in the cancer centre, providing care at both outpatient appointments and for inpatients in the hospital.

We caught up with Clare to find out more about her role and how the services the charity supports help her each day.

What does your role involve? How do you support people affected by cancer?

“As part of the physiotherapy team, I can assess patients’ movement, strength, flexibility and co-ordination, and provide intervention if it is required. With cancer treatment, patients can suffer from a whole variety of side effects, and often physiotherapy support can help with these. By providing support, I can help patients with management of pain and side effects such as fatigue and Lymphoedema.

“Our support can be both pre-hab or as part of rehab, meaning that we can work with patients right from getting them as physically prepared for treatment as possible, to supporting them to get back on their feet after treatment. The support I offer can, in turn, help patients with their general function, gain them back their independence, and improve their overall quality of life.”

How important is Friends of the Cancer Centre to your role?

“Friends of the Cancer Centre has supported the physiotherapy team in the cancer centre for many years, by providing us with funding for vital equipment and information leaflets for patients.

“Personally, I have been able to avail of funding in recent years to help my breast cancer patients continue their rehabilitation at home, in between appointments with me. The charity kindly funded a number of shoulder pulleys for my patients, meaning they could work on improving the range of movement in their shoulders, and can more easily adopt and maintain the position required for radiotherapy treatment.

“The charity also funds our Cancer Physical Activity Coach’s post, and his support, through both one-to-one and group exercise programmes, has proved invaluable for our patient groups.

“I would like to say a big thank you to all those who support the work of Friends of the Cancer Centre. The funding and support provided from the charity makes a huge difference to staff in the physiotherapy department, and most importantly, to our patients.”

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