Cancer information and support centres - for anyone affected by cancer

The Trust has two cancer information and support centres:

  • The Macmillan Butterfly Centre at Epsom Hospital
  • The Cancer Information and Support Centre at St Helier Hospital

The centres offer support to patients and relatives affected by cancer, in a friendly, relaxing environment. The centres provide information, emotional support, the HOPE (Help with overcoming problems effectively) course to help people who have cancer to get on with their lives, complementary therapies, relaxation and confidential counselling. The centres offer an image workshop which aims to give patients tips on clothing styles that suit, shopping tips, make-up tips, etc to help them gain confidence when they need it most. 

Currently due to the COVID 19 restrictions we offer emotional support, information, signposting, referral to the Macmillan Psychology Service and financial support where appropriate. All our complementary therapies are suspended for the time being.

We are currently offering a telephone service but appointments can be booked for a face to face chat. We can also visit patients on the ward if appropriate.

To refer a patient / relative please contact Tarlika Patel from Tuesday – Friday on:

01372 735456 / 0208 296 4730 or fill in the cancer information and support centres referral form [doc] 56KB and email it to

Patients and relatives can also self-referral by contacting Tarlika on:

01372 735456 / 0208 296 4730


The information and support service is available:

Tuesday – Friday between 9.30am – 4.30pm


For more information please see our information leaflet: CISC information leaflet [pdf] 10MB


COVID 19 update

A diagnosis of cancer and treatment can be challenging and it may affect your physical and emotional wellbeing. When faced with the additional and unprecedented circumstances of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, you may be finding it harder to manage these challenges.

We are here to offer you information and emotional support during the COVID-19 pandemic. I can offer help and support for referral to our:

  • Macmillan Psychology Service for specialist psychological support, and
  • Macmillan CAB service for financial help

Please note that currently we can offer information and support from, Tuesday – Friday between 9.30am – 4.30pm. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, Tarlika is offering telephone support during these days/times but if you would prefer to meet with Tarlika face-to-face, please do let her know.

Please note that we are unable to offer any complementary therapies at the moment.

If you have any questions or concerns, or need further support, please do not hesitate to contact Tarlika. She has an answerphone so please leave your name and contact details with a brief message and she will get back to you on her return.

Tarlika Patel, Macmillan Cancer Information and Support Manager - 01372 735044

More information

Recognition for a quality service

The Macmillan Butterfly Centre was first awarded the Macmillan Quality Environment Mark (MQEM) in May 2013.

To receive the award, the centre environment had to score highly in areas such as use of space, comfort and atmosphere, personal and social interaction and health and well-being. The centre scored highly in each category.

The Butterfly Centre applied for the Macmillan Quality Environment Mark® (MQEM) to achieve recognition for the hard work and dedication they have put into creating a quality service for patients and their loved ones.

Achieving MQEM provided positive feedback and a seal of approval for the environment and the achievements of the centre staff and volunteers. 

After the initial MQEM award is received, environments are re-assessed every three years to make sure that the high standards are kept up all the time.

The Macmillan Butterfly Centre had its re-assessment in June 2016 and again in July 2019. We are proud to say that we retained the award in 2016 and in 2019.

Key staff

Tarlika Patel, Macmillan cancer information and support manager
T: 01372 735044 or 01372 735456 (Epsom) or 020 8296 4730 (St Helier)

Emotional support

Our staff at both centres are here to listen to and discuss your views and concerns, and provide a full range of relevant information on cancer awareness, prevention, diagnosis, treatments and all aspects of cancer care.

The period between a diagnosis of cancer and commencing treatment can be particularly difficult. You and your family are encouraged to return for further information or support throughout the cancer journey.

Patients with a suspected malignancy, newly diagnosed patients or patients at any time during their cancer journey can be seen with their families in the privacy and comfort of the centres where information can be given and clarified.

Liaison with healthcare professionals working in our hospitals ensures that you receive continuity of care and a seamless service throughout all stages of your treatment. Where additional psychological support is required, referrals can be made to a specialist counselling service.

Cancer information library

Both centres have a well stocked cancer information library, containing up-to-date information on cancer awareness and prevention and on all types of cancers and their treatment.

Trained staff are on hand to direct you to relevant literature or explain information that may be new.

A selection of information is also available in a range of different formats and languages.

Opening hours

The information library at Epsom Hospital operates a drop-in facility and is open Monday to Friday (excluding public holidays), 9am - 4.30pm.

The information library at St Helier Hospital operates a drop-in facility and is open on Thursdays and Fridays (excluding public holidays), 9.30am - 4.30pm.

You can drop in or make an informal appointment to be guided around the resources. We advise you to make an appointment in advance to ensure that you are not kept waiting.

Supportive therapies

Supportive therapies can play a part in alleviating distress for some cancer patients.

They can offer a holistic approach to cancer care and can result in patients feeling more empowered over their illness.

These therapies are being used under the umbrella of integrated healthcare. This means that their focus is on health and healing rather than disease and treatment. They seek to bring together body, mind and spirit so that healthcare encompasses the whole person.

Supportive therapies at Epsom Hospital

We offer the following supportive therapies in the Macmillan Butterfly Centre at Epsom Hospital:

  • Aromatherapy
  • Counselling
  • Healing
  • Massage
  • Reflexology
  • Reiki
  • Yoga.

Supportive therapies at St Helier Hospital

We offer the following supportive therapies in the Cancer Information and Support Centre at St Helier Hospital:

  • Counselling
  • Reflexology.

Macmillan Cancer Psychological Support Service

The service provides a range of different talking therapies including cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), counselling and solution focused therapy. The service can provide information, support and practical help with discussing and thinking about the concerns you have related to cancer. Appointments last for an hour and people can vary in how many sessions they require. The service can provide up to around six to eight sessions and this will be agreed with yourself.

For more information please see:

Referrals can be made via: 

The Macmillan Cancer Psychological Support (CaPS) Referral Form By email to: By phone: 0797523237

HOPE (Help Overcoming Problems Effectively)

Are you finding it tough living with cancer or after treatment?

Our HOPE (Help Overcoming Problems Effectively) course is currently on hold due to COVID. If you would like to know when the course will resume, please contact Tarlika Patel on 01372 735456 or 020 8296 4730.

Macmillan CAB advice service for south west London

The Macmillan Citizen Advice Bureau (CAB) advice service is a free confidential welfare benefits and money advice service for people living with cancer, their families and carers.

A CAB advisor will be available by appointment only to give free, confidential and impartial advice to people affected by cancer.

To find out more about accessing this service, please see Macmillan CAB service [pdf] 938KB

New You

An interactive free workshop for men and women with cancer

Image consultant Christine Broome will cover the following topics:

  • Styles that suit you
  • Shopping sensibly
  • Wardrobe planning
  • Make-up and accessories
  • Colour, body shape, hair.

The New You workshop has been currently suspended due to COVID. If you would be interested in doing the workshop online, please contact Tarlika Patel on 01372 735456 or 020 8296 4730.

Cancer patient forum

Are you a cancer patient, or are you a carer for someone who has cancer?

Your experience is valuable to us and we welcome your comments and suggestions.

Come and join us to help improve cancer services in our hospitals.

View the Cancer Patient Forum poster[pdf] 845KB

For further information please call Tarlika Patel on 01372 735456 (Epsom) or 020 8296 4730 (St Helier).

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