We hear on an almost daily basis about the evolution in the way we access services.
The Communications Market Report 2016 reports that “Nine in ten adults reported going online every day. The internet takes up a considerable proportion of people’s time each week, with the average internet user estimating they spend 25 hours online each week, rising to 29 hours for 16-24s.”
Essentially the internet is fast becoming the go to for everything we need to know, at any time of the day or night, and on the move.
“I feel so lucky to have found this forum and for all the love that came ‘through’ cancer.”
Nowhere is this more evident than in the case of Beating Bowel Cancer’s forum, our online support and information community for all those affected by bowel cancer – patients, carers, relatives and friends. The forum also boasts a section just for relatives and friends, and a dedicated thread for specialist colorectal nurses to share best practice.
We’ve seen the number of visits double over the past three years, with the average now standing at 42,000 per month and counting. The number of posts has risen dramatically too, and we’re hugely grateful to our team of ten volunteer moderators who are ever-vigilant in making sure that the content of the forum is safe and relevant.
“It is hard going from a fully functioning individual to being viewed as a cancer sufferer. Your whole world changes in an instant. My oncologist is so keen on this forum, that she has even included it in my appointment summary letter.”
Topic areas cover all aspects of diagnosis and treatment, with sections dedicated to younger patients, those with advanced disease and those in remission, as well as advice on how to stay as well as possible during treatment.
The warmth and humanity that emanates from the forum is striking: the newly-diagnosed making their first tentative posts will be welcomed within minutes and while there are many stories that make for difficult reading, there are lighter moments that demonstrate how important it is to ‘take a break’ from time to time.
Take a tour of the new-look forum at community.beatingbowelcancer.org/forum/