The England international was one of the first to set foot in the clinic at Tottenham Community Sports Centre, opposite White Hart Lane, where members of the public are able to get checked out by specialist cancer nurses. Legendary Club Ambassador Gary Mabbutt was also in attendance.
The clinic is a result of a year-long partnership between NHS England (London) ‘Get to know cancer’ and the Club, which is committed to raising awareness of symptoms and promoting early diagnosis throughout the 2013/2014 football season. Previously the ‘Get to know cancer’ campaign has launched pop-up shops but this is the first drop-in clinic it has established in a local community centre.
Kyle said: “All the players at Tottenham Hotspur have been proud to support the ‘Get to know cancer’ campaign this season and it’s great that the Club is involved in the opening of this clinic, which could help save the lives of local residents through early diagnosis.
“As a Premier League football club, we appeal to so many people and can hopefully encourage many to visit the clinic if they have any concerns about their health."
The clinic forms part of a five year strategy from NHS England (London) aimed at boosting cancer services, enhancing patient experience and raising survival rates.
Haringey is one of the most diverse boroughs in London with some of the most deprived wards in England. In the four years up to 2005, mortality rates were highest in Northumberland Park and White Hart Lane wards.
Between 2007 and 2009 there were 1,044 cancer related deaths in Haringey, with the most caused by trachea, bronchus and lung cancer (20%); breast cancer (9.7%); prostate cancer (7.7%); colon cancer (5.8%) and pancreatic cancer (5.6%). However, around 40 per cent of cancers could be prevented by simple changes in lifestyle, such as getting more active, eating better and quitting smoking.
Anyone can go along to the clinic, situated in the community centre (701-701 High Road, London, N17 8AD), to speak to a nurse. No appointment is necessary. Nurses at the clinic will provide information and refer residents to free local help, including weight management and stop smoking services, where appropriate.
The Haringey clinic is the latest in a series of Get to know cancer pop-up shops and market stalls across London, including outside White Hart Lane on certain home match days.
Dr Henrietta Hughes, Medical Director for North Central and East London, NHS England, said: “Cancer can be preventable, treatable and beatable, but the earlier it is diagnosed, the better the chance of successful treatments. We estimate 1,000 lives could be saved each year just by spotting the disease earlier. Last week, we launched a new five year plan to overhaul cancer services in the capital, so it is crucial that new clinics such as this one in the heart of Haringey encourage people to get help sooner. We are delighted to be working with Tottenham Hotspur FC and Haringey Council and urge every resident to get along to the clinic to get checked out.”
Councillor Bernice Vanier, Cabinet Member for Health and Adult Services and Deputy Leader of the Haringey Council, said: “People often don’t seek help from healthcare services until they feel really unwell and by then treatment can be a more radical and have less chance of success. Some cancers can be prevented if we help people change unhealthy lifestyles.
“The prevention and early identification of cancer is a priority within the Health and Wellbeing strategy led by Haringey Council. The ‘Get to know cancer clinic’ is an opportunity for people to understand how to better recognise cancer and get early help and advice.
“Our volunteer community health champions who work within the Tottenham area to raise awareness of signs and symptoms of cancer to encourage people to seek help early. They will be working alongside the drop-in clinic in the next few weeks. We will also offer support from our free stop smoking service and health trainers to help prevent cancer.”
The clinic is open for six weeks from today (Tuesday, February 4) on: