2 July 2021 | Comment | Article by Richard Green

Action Meso Day 2021: Hugh James helps finance new project to support people in Wales with asbestos-related cancer

Hugh James helps finance new project to support people in Wales with asbestos-related cancer

Our firm is supporting a new project to help people with asbestos-related cancer in Wales, by giving them better access to specialist support, the best treatment, care, and clinical trials.

The project is designed to prevent the fear, isolation and lack of awareness experienced by a South Wales family, and client of Hugh James, who say they would have benefited from support like this, if it had been around when their father (pictured left) was alive.

The project has been set up by Mesothelioma UK and is led by Mesothelioma UK Clinical Nurse Specialist for Wales, Sarah Morgan. A donation of £12,500 has been made by Hugh James, which has one of the leading specialist asbestos related claims teams in the UK.

The project will help establish a Welsh network of Mesothelioma UK specialist nurses to provide support for more patients and increase knowledge of mesothelioma among healthcare professionals in Wales. 

Richard Green, Partner and Head of the Asbestos Team at Hugh James, commented:

“Asbestos was banned over 20 years ago, but the number of people diagnosed with mesothelioma each year continues to increase, due to the long latency period between the time when someone is exposed to asbestos and the manifestation of symptoms.  It can be up to 50 years after the asbestos exposure that someone develops mesothelioma.

Those in Wales continue to pay a heavy price for our industrial past and the number of people suffering with mesothelioma continues to increase.  It’s pleasing that Mesothelioma UK have started a project with a focus upon helping mesothelioma sufferers in Wales and we felt it appropriate to make a significant donation to support the charity and, more importantly, the people of Wales who unfortunately suffer with this terrible condition”. 

Commenting on the project, Sarah Morgan, from Mesothelioma UK said:

“I’m delighted to be leading this project for Mesothelioma UK in Wales and I look forward to working closely with my colleagues throughout Wales to improve services for all those affected by mesothelioma. Many cancer patients and cancer services have been badly affected by the recent pandemic and none more so the mesothelioma patients and services. The need for an all-Wales approach to specialist services for mesothelioma has never been more urgent.”

It’s the kind of support that would have been invaluable to Brian Case, and his family. His mesothelioma diagnosis was delayed due to the pandemic and he died in July 2020, a month after his diagnosis. While it’s too late for him, his daughter says this project would have helped them:

Speaking of her father’s ordeal, Sarah Bard, said today:

“Dad was never ill and I can’t remember him ever visiting a doctor. Due to the COVID situation our doctors were putting off seeing him so, when he had had 3 repeat prescriptions and been in pain for many months, we all started to get concerned. It took us to get very stern with our practice to make them see him. After 10mins in the doctors chair we were asked to take him to hospital.

 

Dad had lost all his confidence over the last couple of years before his death, it was like he was preparing to die. He stopped driving, which meant not seeing us so much and not being able to help with the grandkids. He stopped going shopping due to the pain. Dad’s big personality was slowing fading. His quality of life had completely changed and my mother’s quality of life will never be the same.

If support like this was available from the onset of dad getting ill, maybe we would have known what to expect and how to have dealt with it a bit easier.”

Brian worked at the Hoover factory in Merthyr Tydfil from 1961 until he retired in 1996. It’s understood that the factory contained asbestos lagged pipework and an asbestos roof. Brian’s family are now appealing for help from former colleagues who might be able to shed some light on the disturbance of asbestos in the factory and how he came into contact with the harmful substance.

This week, on Friday 2 July, it’s Action Mesothelioma Day which aims to raising awareness about mesothelioma, which is an asbestos-related cancer, the only known cause of which is previous exposure to asbestos.

Armed with the experience and specialist knowledge that is required for this complex area, we have helped thousands of people who have been either injured or developed an illness as a result of their work.

For further information or advice, visit our Asbestos page.

Disclaimer: The information on the Hugh James website is for general information only and reflects the position at the date of publication. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be treated as such. If you would like to ensure the commentary reflects current legislation, case law or best practice, please contact the blog author.

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