Don't miss a story sign up to the North Devon Gazette's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Cancer nurse says new wellbeing centre is ‘vital’ for North Devon patients

PUBLISHED: 11:27 07 August 2017 | UPDATED: 16:15 09 August 2017

Cancer nurse and patient Laura Harris is supporting the North Devon Cancer and Wellbeing Centre appeal.

Cancer nurse and patient Laura Harris is supporting the North Devon Cancer and Wellbeing Centre appeal.

Archant

A cancer nurse receiving palliative care at North Devon District Hospital (NDDH) says she is determined to see a new cancer and wellbeing centre built.

Hospital charity Over and Above last week launched its £1.5million appeal to build the new centre at NDDH.

Laura Harris, an acute oncology nurse at the Seamoor Unit who was diagnosed with incurable bowel cancer in January, said the centre will be ‘vital’ for patients.

Laura, 42, has been on an aggressive chemotherapy treatment every two weeks, but despite the severe side effects, is determined to support the appeal.

The mother-of-two told the Gazette: “I am determined this will be built before I leave this earth. This centre is extremely important.

“To be able to come in and see a friendly face, or to be able to walk in without an appointment, will be the most liberating experience for patients.

“It will be a place to go, should you need someone to talk to who is perhaps not a family member; someone who understands what you’re going through.

“You could, for example, be sat next to a woman who has just been diagnosed and has that glazed look of someone who has just been hit by a bus.

“Talking about what you’re both going through can be therapeutic for both parties.”

How the new Over and Above Cancer and Wellbeing Centre will look. How the new Over and Above Cancer and Wellbeing Centre will look.

READ MORE: Hospital launches £1.5million appeal for new North Devon Cancer and Wellbeing Centre

Laura said she hopes new support groups for cancer patients – both past and current – will be borne from the centre as people use it.

“It’s going to really improve people’s quality of life, and when you don’t have much time left you want it to be as good as it possibly can,” she said.

“For curative patients, the goal is just to survive, and to survive well with a quality of life that doesn’t financially, mentally or emotionally bleed you dry in the process.”

Laura said oversubscribed services, such as counselling for patients and their families, would be able to move into the new centre grow to accommodate needs.

How the new Over and Above Cancer and Wellbeing Centre will look. How the new Over and Above Cancer and Wellbeing Centre will look.

Laura said her daughter Molly used the services after she was initially diagnosed.

“She moved away from me; she couldn’t look at me or hug me, and I didn’t know how to reach out to her,” said Laura.

“I booked her into counselling and it has given me my daughter back; they’ve given her the skills to accept that life is changeable.”

To find out more about the Over and Above charity, visit www.overandabove.org.uk, the charity’s Facebook page, contact the fundraising team on 01271 311772, or email ndht.charity@nhs.net.

Other News Stories

18:33

A Barnstaple A road has been blocked after a crash involving two vehicles.

Read more
17:21

Bratton Fleming Village Stores is settling into its new home thanks to a huge effort from the community.

Read more

South Molton Rugby Club has handed over more than £4,000 to the charity MIND in memory of their former team-mate.

Read more
14:57

Will you be buying a EuroMillions ticket for tomorrow night’s draw? If so, you could be in with a chance at a £141million jackpot.

Read more
Yesterday, 11:19

Barnstaple photographer Tristan Clarkson highlights the beautiful side of Barnstaple with his camera - see more of his photos here.

Read more
Saturday, February 17, 2018

Big sound soul band Soul Intention will be performing to raise money for the hospital charity’s Cancer and Wellbeing Centre Appeal on Saturday, February 24.

Read more
Saturday, February 17, 2018

People across North Devon felt the earth move today (Saturday) after an earth tremor hit the UK.

Read more
Saturday, February 17, 2018

An earthquake has been felt by people in Devon this afternoon.

Read more
Saturday, February 17, 2018

Check out this week’s gallery of photos sent in by Gazette readers through our image-sharing website iwitness24.

Read more

Local Weather

Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 9°C

min temp: 7°C

Most Read News

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Competitions
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Image
Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Local business directory

North Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications