Peter is 79 years old, Louth born and bred, and he’s been living with cancer for just over five years now. He had his kidney removed in 2017 after his initial diagnosis, subsequently getting the ‘all clear’ before it returned to his bowel. An operation to remove the cancer left him with a permanent stoma, something he has learnt to live with, describing it as “very inconvenient, but I’m still here.”
However, within the following year he found out he had liver cancer, since 2019 he’s been having chemotherapy on a Hope for Tomorrow mobile cancer care unit. He’s due to receive his 60th dose “on what we call the bus” on his next upcoming visit.
Peter explains: “I’ve been going to the mobile unit now for almost two years. Before that I was having to travel to Grantham Hospital for part of my treatment which was a 100-mile round trip each time, so that was quite an ordeal.”
Each fortnight, he visits the mobile cancer care unit based at Louth’s County Hospital for his two doses of chemo, and the also unit based at Skegness and District Hospital to have his pump removed.
He continues: “It’s so convenient for me. It’s a very, very relaxed and comfortable atmosphere. There are only four chairs and the girls that manage it, manage it very, very well. It’s really got everything going for it and the girls are wonderful. During the pandemic, we just carried on throughout uninterrupted; we were so lucky.
He has found there have been many benefits for him going to the mobile unit, not least saving him precious time and money.
“There are much better things I can get on with rather than spending it in a car and of course, travelling itself now is very expensive with the high fuel costs, so I’m grateful for that. The fact that I can just pop down the road is brilliant.
“People who come on to the bus for their treatment think it’s absolutely fantastic that they have this amazing service pretty much on their doorstep. I know patients who visit for the first time don’t know initially what it’s going to be like and they’re a bit worried about it. But as soon as they can see what it’s like, they totally relax. It might sound a bit strange, but I actually look forward to going. Lynn and the girls are so accommodating and nothing’s too much trouble.”