A DORSET nurse has been awarded a £6,400 grant to explore healthcare overseas to improve survival rates for blood and lymphatic cancers in the UK.

Anita Immanuel, a senior research nurse from Christchurch, is one of 137 recipients of a travel fellowship by the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust.

She said: “I am very grateful and thank the WCMT for awarding me this prestigious travel fellowship which will enable me to explore the formalised nurse led follow up care for patients who have been treated with cancer of the blood or lymphatic system in established cancer centres in Australia and Canada thereby improving their quality of lives."

There are currently no set guidelines for the follow up care for patients who have completed treatment for blood and lymphatic cancers in the UK.

However, both Australia and Canada have established models of follow-up care for cancer survivors.

With the increase in the number of cancer survivors and possible long-term side effects on the quality of life, it is important to formalise post-treatment follow up and co-ordination between the health care providers.

Dr Helen McCarthy, Anita’s clinical supervisor at the Royal Bournemouth Hospital, said: “The travel will give her a global experience which she can translate into recommendations for improving care provision in the UK.”

A total of 137 fellowships worth £876,540 have been awarded this year.

Past award winners include nurses, artists, scientists, engineers, farmers, conservationists, carers and members of the emergency services.

Applications open for the 2015 Winston Churchill Travelling Fellowship categories on May 7. Visit wcmt.org.uk for more details.