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New app supports breast cancer patients after treatment

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Leading support charity Breast Cancer Care has today launched the first app of its kind to help people move forward after a breast cancer diagnosis and treatment.

The innovative Breast Cancer Care App (BECCA) provides trustworthy and tailored information and support for people trying to adapt to daily life once hospital treatment ends.

Bitesize tips are delivered daily to users as a deck of cards, letting them flick through ideas on topics like exercise, diet, hobbies and mental wellbeing whenever they want. They can then favourite the cards they are interested in and use these to support them in taking small steps towards approaching life after breast cancer with confidence.

The content of the app has been developed by Breast Cancer Care, with the support of healthcare professionals and women living with breast cancer to gain insight on the type of content needed. The charity found the content most women want is topical, breast cancer specific and sourced from other women with the disease.

BECCA has been rigorously tested with over 1,100 women along the way to ensure it provides the best possible experience.

Kim Hulme, 47, from Dartmoor, was diagnosed with breast cancer in May 2016. She has been testing the BECCA app since finishing treatment. She says:

“Living in a remote area, I felt cut off from support and was desperate for something I could access online. Going through breast cancer is absolutely terrifying, and when you come away from the rollercoaster of appointments and treatment, you find yourself staring at a blank canvas thinking ‘what now?’

“BECCA has been absolutely perfect for me. It has reminded me to look after myself and helped me change how I feel. For instance, I felt really nervous about exercise and needed to know how to get back into it slowly – the app has helped me do that.

“I have two small children, so I feel it’s really important that I find a way to move forward from what I have been through and enjoy life again. BECCA has really helped me to start living in the moment.”

David Crosby, Director of Services and Engagement at Breast Cancer Care, says:

“The people we support tell us that, when you’ve finished breast cancer treatment, getting back to ‘normal’ can feel like a huge mountain to climb. Many expect to be hugely relieved, but instead can feel scared about what lies ahead. For some, this is the hardest part of their breast cancer, even more difficult than the diagnosis itself.

“Around 691,000 people are alive in the UK after a diagnosis of breast cancer1, and the numbers are only set to rise. So it’s crucial we do more to reach as many of those who need support as possible, and make sure they know they’re not alone.

“The aim of BECCA is to help people feel healthier, happier and more ready to move on with life after a breast cancer diagnosis. We hope that, by providing people with the support and information they need in a way that fits into their everyday lives, we can give them a boost of confidence to live well after their treatment ends.”

The BECCA app can be downloaded now from the App Store, and on Google Play from next week. Join the conversation with #CareApp

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