Your Health Companion

Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation is launching a new partnership with Dash Global who have created the app, Your Health Companion.

The Health Companion can help people affected by lung cancer gain a greater sense of control over their care, allow you to reflect on how you are managing and feeling and capture ‘real-world’ feedback. This feedback will open the door to new and better cancer medicines and should lead to significant improvements in assessment of new treatment and the delivery of NHS services.

How does the diary work?

Your Health Companion allows you to keep a record in one place, across the time of your treatment, health and how your cancer treatment is affecting you day to day activities and life.

The app is designed to help you monitor changes and to make it easier to communicate these at appointments with your lung cancer team. This in turn can help your health team understand more about the impact of your cancer and its treatment to help assess you promptly, help you manage better and access services.

You can record your information and share it with health care professionals when you think that is useful.

Currently there are two companions available – one for lung cancer and another for mesothelioma. The app is being developed so that patients can also track their appointments and medications. By sharing their data with healthcare professionals via the app, it ensures that a patient’s medical information is available to the right healthcare professionals wherever they are.

How can I access it?

The Health Companion will remind you to complete a record monthly of a number of questions on your health and wellbeing. You are able to enter details about symptoms you are experiencing, how your treatment is effecting you and the impact your illness is having on your day-to-day activities. This can be done on a smartphone, tablet, laptop or PC. This will take around 15 minutes and can be done at the time you choose that is convenient and useful for you.

Who is involved in the diary?

Your Health Companion was co-developed by Dash Global, a leading real-world evidence health care company, in collaboration with patients, nurses, clinicians, and patient advocacy groups.

Lung Cancer Nurses UK and Mesothelioma UK, ALK +UK and EGFR+UK and Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation are all supporting the project.  We will work together to encourage take-up of the ‘Your Health Companion’ throughout England, Scotland, and Wales.

More than 30 Hospital Trusts have given approval for the app and hundreds of specialist nurses have been trained to work with it to engage with patients, their families, and support groups, in its use.

Why and how is Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation involved?

Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation is sharing information of the diary with people affected by lung cancer because we believe it is a useful tool to help you manage your diagnosis and treatment.

We will have access to anonymised data from the app and be able to survey people with lung cancer using the diary about their experiences when appropriate.

What is the impact of the information gathered?

Currently in health care there is a focus on helping people to manage the impact of their health conditions. This is called “self-management” and there is a growing interest in the experience of those living with cancer.  

At present the information gathered by healthcare services and research has limited content on what it is like to have a treatment or be affected by a condition such as lung cancer from the personal perspective. In research this is known as “Patient Reported Outcomes”.  It captures information such as what is it really like living with cancer, how new and existing drugs improve the disease and how people experience and manage side effects. These experiences can help researchers and service managers improve and enhance how treatments and services are delivered.

Any data that you record on the diary is anonymised and your personal details are not shared with any partners or external bodies such as the NHS.

If you have any questions about your experience of lung cancer diagnosis and treatment our Ask the Nurse service is here to help. You can contact us on 0800 358 7200 or email lungcancerhelp@roycastle.org