Department:John Barnes,Patient Advocate,WP1
I am a bowel cancer survivor. In 2000, I was diagnosed with a Dukes stage 2 bowel cancer in transverse colon following an emergency presentation with a rectal haemorrhage.
I was born in the Cambridgeshire Fens in the East of England, I went to school in the Midlands, and am a Business graduate from Coventry University. I now live near Harrogate in rural North Yorkshire, UK. I had a career in industry and owned my own lighting design and distribution company for 20 years which I sold in 2015.
Since my operation I have acted as a ‘friend’ to others who are going through similar experiences with bowel cancer. A role that I get immense satisfaction from.
I am currently a Patient Advocate for Bowel Cancer Intelligence UK and Yorkshire Cancer Research and I have represented the BCI UK at the GB Colorectal Surgeons Conference, the Public Health England Conference and also the UK Government’s cross party ‘Battle against Cancer’ Conference. I also sit on the NHS Colorectal Expert Group which is charged with producing ‘The Clinical Advice for the Commissioning of the whole Bowel Cancer Pathway’.
I now willingly give my time to try and help with the improvement of the outcome of all bowel cancer patients; I feel that I am one of the lucky ones. My personal aim is to help take the luck element out of the diagnosis and treatment of this disease.
I am married with 2 adult daughters and two grandchildren. I love travelling and seeing the world, golf, cycling, art, antiques, photography, and family history research and can trace his family back to the winning side at the Battle of Hastings in 1066!
I am a bowel cancer survivor. I was born in the Cambridgeshire Fens in the East of England, I went to school in the Midlands, and I am a Business graduate from Coventry University. I now live near Harrogate in rural North Yorkshire, UK. I had a career in industry and owned my own lighting design and distribution company for 20 years which I sold in 2015.
In 2000, following a rectal haemorrhage, I was diagnosed with bowel cancer. I had a Dukes stage 2 tumour in my mid transverse colon, and I had a right hemicolectomy. The operation took place in the Leeds General Infirmary. Since my operation I have acted as a mentor to others who were going through a similar experience to that which I had. I have a form of FAP polyposis which manifests itself in the regular production of multiple polyps. In order to keep the situation under control I need to have a polypectomy every 18 months.
In 2017 I was asked to become a Patient Advocate for a 5-year £5m research project into Bowel Cancer being undertaken by Bowel Cancer Intelligence UK and now based at the Oxford University. The project is funded jointly by CRUK and the Bobby Moore Fund. The Patient and Public Group of BCI UK also has a joint ‘patient involvement’ function working with Yorkshire Cancer Research.
I am also the Patient Advocate on the Colorectal Clinical Expert Group who are charged with producing ‘The Clinical Advice for the Commissioning of the Whole Bowel Cancer Pathway” for NHS England.
In 2018 I was asked to be the British Patient Advocate for Optimisticc and I am now proud to be working with Professor Phil Quirke and his team at Leeds University on Work Package 1: The microbiome in bowel cancer risk.
This year I was asked to join the DATA-CAN Patient and Public Involvement and Engagement Group. DATA-CAN is a newly formed ‘health data research hub’ and is a unique partnership of NHS organizations, patients, charities, academia, and industry working together to improve cancer care by harnessing anonymous clinical and genetic data to provide cancer patients with faster access to clinical trials, and to enable the development of new and improved medicines and treatment approaches.
I now willingly give my time to support others sufferers with colorectal cancer and in research projects aimed at the improvement of patient diagnosis, treatment and outcomes. I feel that I am one of the ‘lucky ones’ and my personal mantra is ‘let’s take the luck element out of the diagnosis and treatment of this disease’.
I am married with two adult daughters and two grandchildren. I love my family, travelling and seeing the world, playing golf, cycling, art, antiques, photography, and family history research. I can trace my family back to the winning side at the Battle of Hastings in 1066!