Information from Greater Manchester Cancer for people affected by cancer regarding the current Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. This page will be regularly updated, please bear with us whilst we try to provide the most up to date information.
On this page, you will find official advice from NHS England and the UK Government, Major Cancer Charities and also places you can access telephone support.
We appreciate this can be a worrying and uncertain time and we will endeavour to do our best to support you during this period.
Page last updated at 12:45 on 25.02.21.
Latest information – February 2021
The UK currently remains in a nationwide lockdown. The Government has recently announced plans to slowly ease lockdown restrictions.
The Government guidance currently states:
“If you are clinically extremely vulnerable you should only go out for medical appointments, exercise or if it is essential. You should not attend work.”
You should still attend medical appointments, unless your clinical team advises you not to
- Latest Government guidance for those shielding, or protecting those who are clinically extremely vulnerable from COVID-19
The UK COVID-19 vaccination programme is currently underway. The UK is currently administering both the Pfizer/BioNTech and Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccines.
These vaccines are currently being rolled out in accordance with the Government’s list of priority groups. You should wait to be contacted to book your vaccination. This is usually via your GP. Please note – there are several scams in circulation – the vaccine is free and you should never be asked to provide your bank details or pay any money for a vaccination.
What should I do if I think I have symptoms of cancer?
It is more important than ever that people with worrying symptoms coms forward to their GP for advice. The NHS has put a number of safety measures in place, in light of COVID-19, to ensure they can see you, safely.
If you have symptoms that are unexplained or persistent it is important that you speak to your GP for advice.
Symptoms could include:
- A cough that has lasted for longer than three weeks, especially if you have ever smoked
- Weight loss
- Unexplained bleeding – this could be coughing up blood, or blood in your poo or urine, for example
- An unexplained lump
- Pain that you can’t explain
- Extreme tiredness
It’s important that if you have symptoms that are concerning you, you speak to your GP for advice. They want to hear from you. It could be nothing serious, but if it is, it’s important that it’s picked up early.
What should I do if I think my cancer has returned, or I have had cancer in the past and I am worried about new symptoms?
It is just as important that people who have previously been affected by cancer be aware of any new symptoms that are concerning them. If you are still under the care of your clinical team, you should let them know about any new or worsening symptoms. Alternatively, you should contact your GP for advice. It may turn out to be nothing serious, but if something is amiss, they can provide you with advice safely about what to do next.
I’m worried about visiting my GP surgery or hospital for an appointment as I’m worried about catching COVID. What should I do?
GP surgeries, hospitals and other healthcare settings have lots of measures in place to keep patients and staff safe during the COVID pandemic.
Many patients may be offered appointments over the telephone, if appropriate, to reduce the need to attend healthcare settings and reduce the overall number of people on site, to allow for social distancing.
Sometimes, you will still need to visit healthcare settings in person for an appointment or tests. If you have been asked to attend an appointment in person, it is important that you attend. If you have any worries about this however, contact the clinical team who can advise you of the measures in place to keep you safe.
It is important that if you have any symptoms that are concerning you, you contact your GP or clinical team for advice.
If you have been asked to attend an appointment at a healthcare setting, please ensure you attend this appointment. If you have concerns or worries, please call your clinical team who can discuss this with you.
There are lots of places you can access information and support, from your own clinical team to the online links mentioned above and the individual charity web pages below.
If it’s a friendly voice and some telephone support you’re looking for:
- Macmillan’s Support Line is available for information, support, guidance or just someone to talk to. You can call the team for free on 0808 808 0000 and lines are open 8am-8pm, 7 days a week.
- Maggie’s Manchester are also available for telephone and email support, or just a friendly chat. You can give the team a call on 0161 641 4848 or 0300 123 1801 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. They are available to take your calls Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm (excludes bank holidays)
Charity-specific advice regarding Coronavirus
A number of charities have created dedicated points of information regarding Coronavirus. Access their pages here: