From Dr David Crichton, Chair of the Doncaster CCG
October is an important month for raising awareness on a range of health and care issues which we’ve been highlighting over the past few weeks. And it’s also a time where we celebrate Black History month, acknowledging the huge contribution and positive impact workers from these communities have had on the NHS throughout its history.
As the body that commissions health care services for the people of Doncaster and as one working with partners right across the healthcare system, we support this national celebration and always welcome the opportunity to focus on the diversity of our workforce.
The CCG plays an active role in Doncaster’s Minorities Partnership Board, as well as facilitating regular meetings of the Black Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) network for people working in Doncaster. These sometime lively and well-attended meetings explore a variety of topics including race equality in our own NHS workforce.
We also work very closely with our patients and the public from BAME communities in Doncaster to promote and ensure equality of health and social care. One example is our ongoing Covid vaccination programme which has seen us develop and run several pop-up clinics targeted at groups and communities we describe as ‘lesser heard’. This includes people from diverse backgrounds such as Gypsy and Roma travellers, asylum seekers, Muslims and Sikhs.
There are a lot of NHS organised events and meetings online to get involved in nationally for the rest of October, most of which are detailed here: Black History Month | NHS Employers
Breast cancer awareness – for men and women
October is also a time when we focus on the detection and prevention of breast cancer. One of the most important things you can do is check yourself regularly and speak to a healthcare professional as soon as you notice anything different.
This could be a lump or painful or itchy breasts. And it doesn’t just affect women. Though male breast cancer is rare it still affects hundreds of men each year. Men have small amounts of breast tissue and should have any lumps or itchiness investigated. There’s more information about this here: https://breastcancernow.org/
If you get invited for a routine breast examination at hospital, please keep the appointment. It’s quick and painless. As with any cancer if it’s detected early enough it can probably be treated successfully.
There’s lots of useful information about the prevention and detection of breast cancer here: Breast Cancer UK | Prevention Hub (breastcancerprevention.org.uk)