Our Service Pledge is a programme dedicated to improving breast cancer services.
The Service Pledge brings patients, healthcare professionals and Cancer Alliances together to work in partnership to design and deliver a concrete action plan of improvements, for everybody’s experience of breast cancer.
We understand the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic will have a lasting impact on the NHS and the services it provides. The Service Pledge is vital in future-proofing breast care services and ensuring patient-centred improvements continue to be made
Hear from patient and healthcare professional about they would recommend the Service Pledge.
How does it work?
Breast Cancer Now helps hospitals gather patient and staff feedback on their breast care service through surveys and focus groups.
The feedback gathered is discussed to find practical ways of making meaningful improvements. Through listening and learning from each other, patients and healthcare professionals work in a true partnership.
Breast Cancer Now draws on 15 years’ experience of improving breast cancer services across the country.
To date, over 120 breast services across the UK have worked with patients to develop their local Service Pledge, delivering over 400 improvements for primary and secondary breast cancer patients in the past five years.
Find out where our recent Service Pledge hospitals are located using our interactive map.
How are patients involved?
The Service Pledge actively involves people with different perspectives of breast cancer, to develop a more complete understanding of the challenges and opportunities to improve treatment and care.
Patients can use their experience of breast cancer as an empowering way to help improve the services others will receive in the future.
Every person's experience of breast cancer is unique and each one matters.
– Linda Young, patient representative 2017
As well as working with local patients, Breast Cancer Now recruits Patient Advocates, who are trained volunteers with a personal experience of breast cancer.
They play a key role in the Service Pledge, helping to support patient involvement and provide an expert sounding board.
For me, becoming a Patient Advocate was about making a difference. I felt with my background and diagnosis of breast cancer I could speak up and represent others who might not themselves be able to do so.
– Joan, Patient Advocate 2017
How do we work with healthcare professionals?
Through the Service Pledge, healthcare professionals can share their experiences.
Combined with patients’ feedback, this provides a deep, broad understanding of how to improve the services teams provide and helps do the best for patients.
– Karen Ives-Smith, Advanced Nurse Practitioner, Service Pledge lead
Breast Cancer Now provide support throughout the process – sharing expert insight, streamlining the process and keeping healthcare professionals motivated, so that services get as much out of it as possible.
How do we involve Cancer Alliances?
One of the main aims of Cancer Alliances is to drive local change in the quality of cancer services to improve cancer outcomes and patient experience.
The Service Pledge recognises that patient experience is as important as clinical effectiveness and safety. By continually improving services, Cancer Alliances can help more people with breast cancer to live and receive the support they need to live well.
By working with Cancer Alliances across the country, the Service Pledge makes sure that learnings and best practice are shared across teams, hospitals and regions, creating consistency in the standard of breast cancer care.
Hear from patients involved in our Service Pledge
- Beverley found her voice by getting involved with the Service Pledge
- Clover turned a difficult experience into something of value
- Patient Advocate Anna Sarphie shares her experience of working with Breast Cancer Now and Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals
- Patient Representative Flora Sheringham has been working with the Service Pledge to improve services at Hinchingbrooke Hospital
In 2019-21 hospitals across the East of England Cancer Alliance (South) took part in Breast Cancer Now’s Service Pledge programme. Hospital staff and patients, with the support of Breast Cancer Now staff and volunteer Patient Advocates, worked in partnership to develop improvements that would make a real difference to patients receiving treatment and care for breast cancer in the future. Over 40 improvements have been developed, below you can find out what improvements they plan to make.
To find out when we’re next recruiting for Patient Advocates, keep an eye out on this page or join our Breast Cancer Voices community - where you can find out about opportunities like this to use your voice and experiences to create change. If you’d like to find out more about the Service Pledge, please contact Catherine Wood, Head of Patient Experience, on 020 7960 3446 or email email@example.com