This year’s National Study Sessions explored enhanced supportive care (ESC) in pancreatic cancer. We ran a selection of free, virtual events throughout October on: symptom assessment and management (7th); effective communications (12th); emotional support (19th); end of life care (26th); and models of practice in ESC (28th).

See the recording and slides for the sessions below:

Symptom assessment and management, Thursday 7th October, 9 – 11am

This session explored the assessment and management of pain, fatigue, nausea and constipation in pancreatic cancer patients, as well as examples of symptom management in practice.

Symptom assessment and management – Daniel Monnery, Palliative Care Consultant at The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre and NHSE National Clinical Advisor for ESC

Supporting patients in practice – Helen Upfold, HPB CNS, Forth Valley Hospital

The role of the CNS in ESC – Steph Gooder, Lead HPB CNS, Stepping Hill Hospital

Watch the session

Recording: Symptom assessment and management, Thursday 7th October, 9 - 11am

Effective communications, Tuesday 12th October, 2.00 – 5.00pm

This session explored the key principles of effective communications and considered how these apply to delegate’s practice with their pancreatic cancer patients. From breaking bad news and having difficult conversations to checking understanding and building rapport with your patients in the current climate. This session was delivered by Accredited Counsellor, Jonathan Hartley and our Specialist Pancreatic Cancer Nurses.

View Jonathan’s presentation

Watch the session

Recording: Effective communications, Tuesday 12th October, 2.00 - 5.00pm

Emotional support, Tuesday 19th October, 09.00 – 12.00

This session explored how you can provide emotional support to your pancreatic cancer patients, while looking after yourself. The Psycho-oncology Team at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust delivered the session looking at: the emotional implications of a pancreatic cancer diagnosis; listening and supportive skills to empower your patients; depression in pancreatic cancer; knowing when and how to direct your patients to expert support; harnessing resilience in patients, their loved ones and yourself; and self-care.

Patient experience, psychological adjustment and best practice pathway in cancer psychological care – Dr Alex King, Consultant Clinical Psychologist

Sustaining a reflective and compassionate practice to underpin your clinical care – Dr Pádraig Cotter, Macmillan Clinical Psychologist

Fostering patient self-management, resilience and care for the family, in the context of a life-limiting cancer – Dr Caroline Johnson, Macmillan Clinical Psychologist

Identifying and responding to distress and depression – Dr Anneka Holden, Macmillan Clinical Psychologist and Sarah Noakes, Counselling Psychologist in Training

Watch the session

Recording: Emotional support, Tuesday 19th October, 9am - 12pm

End of life care, Tuesday 26th October 2021, 3 – 5pm

Sadly, around 9,000 people die from pancreatic cancer every year in the UK. In this session, Dr James Davies, Consultant in Palliative Medicine at City Hospice Cardiff covered key areas of end of life care to ensure patients with pancreatic cancer receive the best support and care they need at this time. He discussed advanced care planning, practical and emotional support, nutritional management, communications, recognising symptoms of end of life, symptom control and preparing for end of life. We also heard personal experiences from Donna Adcock, Deputy Chief Nurse at London North West Healthcare NHS Trust, Ruth May, Chief Nursing Officer at NHS England and members of our Patient and Carer Advisory Board.

View James’s slides

Watch the session

Recording: End of life care, Tuesday 26th October 2021, 3 - 5pm

Models of practice in ESC, Thursday 28th October 2021, 9 – 10.30am

In this session we heard about different models of enhanced supportive care from across the UK and how these are influencing practice and patient experience.

View the slides

Dr Jo Bowden, Consultant in Palliative Medicine at NHS Fife on their Best Supportive Care pilot

Sinead Benson, Palliative Care CNS at Clatterbridge Cancer Centre, Liverpool, on their ESC service

Gilly Barringer, ESC CNS and Anne Munton, Lead ESC CNS at Derriford Hospital, Plymouth, on their ESC service

Watch the session

Recording: Models of practice in ESC, Thursday 28th October 2021, 9 - 10.30am

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us at


The National Study Sessions were supported by