Cancer Council has launched five new episodes of its podcast The Thing About Advanced Cancer, focused on supporting carers and families of people who are in their last months of life.
Hosted by well-known broadcaster and cancer survivor Julie McCrossin, the episodes feature interviews with respected cancer experts covering the practical and emotional aspects of the carer’s role.
Each episode also includes deeply personal insights from people who have cared for someone at the end of life.
The episodes provide trustworthy information on important issues such as self-care for carers, managing relationships with family members and friends, the practical aspects of supporting someone to die at home, and coping with grief.
Elizabeth Humphries, Cancer Council NSW Cancer Information Unit Manager, said the podcast episodes were created with support from the NSW Ministry of Health to address gaps in the existing resources for people caring for someone at the end of life.
“Caring for someone with advanced cancer can be one of the most rewarding things a person can do – but it can also be one of the most challenging, and at times isolating,” she said.
“During this stage of a person’s illness, carers and families need reliable information about palliative and end-of-life care in a format that is quick and easy to access, as well as being easy to understand. For carers, families and friends of people approaching the end of life, finding the right information and support can make all the difference during such a difficult time.
“We know carers are often very time-poor, so we hope that by providing this information through a podcast that people can simply download to their phone, we can make it easier for everyone to access the information they need, whenever they need it.”
One of the carers who shared their experience for the podcast is Paul Scott-Williams, who cared for his husband Warren.
In 2018, Warren was diagnosed with late-stage thymus squamous cell carcinoma, a very rare form of cancer. He died just 204 days later.
“When you start a relationship with somebody, you certainly don’t think that if this works, one of you is probably going to be there when the other one dies,” Paul said.
“I’ve found that the hardest – the fact that that I was there as he took his last breath and I wasn’t ready for that.
“But I don’t regret it. And I certainly wouldn’t change it, because he wanted me to be there.”
The new The Thing About Advanced Cancer podcast episodes are available on the Cancer Council website on Apple Podcasts, and other podcast apps.
Source: Cancer Council