Finances can be a major problem for patients and families, due to loss of income because of the inability to work. Additional expenditure can arise from the cost of travel, disrupted routine, needing new clothes because of weight change, cost of equipment, aids or additional household appliances, special dietary requirements, child care. These can be daunting especially when there is less money coming in.
Members of the Palliative Care Team can help patients to apply for some non-means tested benefits such as Attendance Allowance or Personal Independence Payment (PIP).
Macmillan Benefit Advisers are based at Southmead Hospital on set days. They can advise patients on whether they may be eligible for any benefits or grants. All appointments will be accessed through the central telephone line at the Citizens Advice Bureau this will be answered during the working day. Patients can contact the Citizens Advice Bureau directly or be referred by a heath care professional. Contact number: 08444 994718 www.bristolcab.org.uk
A carer is someone who regularly provides a lot of help for, or looks after a partner, relative or friend to support them in returning to and remaining at home. We recognise that caring for someone with palliative or end of life needs can be difficult. The local authority has a duty to assess the needs of carers. Find out more about carers information.
Macmillan Cancer Support Helpline provides practical, medical, emotional and financial support. Contact: 0808 808 0000.
Macmillan also produces a booklet called ‘Help With the Cost of Cancer: a guide to benefits and financial help for people affected by cancer.
Some people may be eligible for a Macmillan grant which is a one-off payment for adults, young people or children with cancer, to cover a wide range of practical needs. This can include things such as heating bills, extra clothing, or for a much-needed break. Find out more information at www.macmillan.org.uk