About the Project

Macmillan Cancer Support are working in partnership with Disability Solutions on this brand new project geared towards members of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender communities affected by cancer.

The Cancer Patient Experience Survey 2014 showed that cancer patients who identified as members of the LGBT community scored lower in 24 indicators, revealing a much poorer patient experience overall.

We recognise that there are social inequalities for members of these communities and that these differences can have significant effects on patients’ experiences and outcomes. Estimates suggest that there may be 40,000 LGBT people living with cancer in the UK, yet relatively little is known about their experiences of care and support.

Locally, there may be difficulties relating to access to services, suitable literature may not be available, and there is poor recognition of the role of a same sex partner in supporting the patient. Members of the trans community have encountered additional problems of exclusion from routine screening programmes.

Additionally, awareness of specific cancer risks within the trans community appears to be low for both service users and professionals.


• Disability Solutions is a user-led organization with considerable experience engaging with groups considered ‘hard to reach’


• Macmillan Cancer Support are the UK’s leading source of cancer support


• Oestrogen may increase the risks of breast cancer for male to female trans individuals


• 21% of trans people reported discrimination, transphobia or unfair treatment from their GP or GP staff


• 1 in 4 patient-facing staff have heard colleagues make homophobic or biphobic remarks


The Staffordshire LGBT & Cancer Project will run for two years to engage with the community including patients, carers and medical professionals. We want to ‘scope’ the services and support currently available and identify any gaps. We will use our existing local links and work with service users and professionals county-wide, with a varied approach including focus groups, interviews, engagement events and more.

Ultimately, we expect our work to lead to service redesign that is more inclusive to the LGBT communities in Staffordshire.