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Carers for people with cancer are between 5 and 7 times more likely to have mental health problems than the general population, according to a landmark new study.

The Dimbleby Cancer Care funded study identifies a major public health concern, according to the lead author Gunn Grande, Professor of Palliative Care at The University of Manchester.

The study, ‘Psychological morbidity* and general health among family caregivers during end of life cancer care: a retrospective census survey‘ reveals 83% of family carers of people with cancer have clinically significant distress – compared to just 15% of the general population. The study retrospectively measured carers’ psychological health and general health during the patient’s last three months of life.

Psychological morbidity* and general health among family caregivers during end of life cancer care: a retrospective census survey

The study, which was supported by NIHR CLAHRC GM and carried out by the Universities of Manchester, Newcastle and Groningen in the Netherlands, has been published in the journal, Palliative Medicine. The team received responses from 1,504 carers through a national four-month post bereavement postal survey in the autumn of 2015. The survey was sent via the Office for National Statistics to 5,271 relatives who registered a death in May

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