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With millions of people living with cancer, this OU/BBC series follows the lives of some of them as they deal with everything the disease has to throw at them: from the moment of diagnosis to whatever lies beyond.

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The Big C & Me follows the lives of nine people across the country living with cancer. Filmed over a year, we are with them as they, and their families, experience everything the disease has to throw at them. From that life changing moment of diagnosis, through treatment and life at home, to whatever lies beyond. Combining observational filmmaking and fixed-rig cameras in hospitals, The Big C & Me enters the world of the cancer patient in 2016.

As series co-producer (in partnership with the BBC), we've collated a range of resources on cancer care. You may like to:

The first episode of The Big C & Me will be broadcast on BBC One on Wednesday 1st June 2016 at 9pm (10.45pm in Scotland). Full broadcast details, and watch again links, can be found on bbc.co.uk. 

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How can we make a difference to people living with cancer? How important is communication? Besides doctors and nurses who are the unsung heroes who help those with cancer? Find out the answers to these questions and much more by ordering this free booklet produced by The Open University.

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Episode 2

I Mikey from The Big C & Me (BBC Programme use only) Copyrighted  image Icon Copyright: BBC n Episode Two we meet three families whose lives are reshaped as the impact of a cancer diagnosis is felt.

We meet 83 year old June and her three daughters in the consulting room as a diagnosis of pancreatic cancer is confirmed. The decision to have no treatment imposes a timeframe of June’s life and the effect of this ripples through the generations as her daughters, grandchildren and great-grandchildren face up to her imminent death.  Over the months we see her daughters help her fulfill her bucket list: top of the list, is living long enough to see her youngest grand-daughter marry but as the months pass a continual deterioration is putting this in jeopardy.

In Wiltshire, Mikey, a nine-year-old boy is rushed into hospital for surgery to remove a brain tumour. We meet him as he begins his chemotherapy. With seven other children to look after, the impact of Mikey’s diagnosis and treatment is felt keenly as his parents juggle their care for him in hospital and their care of his siblings at home. As his treatment progresses we witness how the large family comes together to support one another in tough times and beyond the family, we see how Mikey’s cancer brings the local community together in their support.

Meanwhile, at the Royal Marsden in Surrey, 17 year-old Phoebe, receiving treatment for a large tumour found on her kidney, is offered the chance to travel to America for Proton Radiotherapy – a treatment that will be available in the UK in 2018. Juggling schoolwork, a new relationship and cancer treatment is at times overwhelming but once the decision is made to have Proton Radiotherapy, Phoebe faces it with determination. Using a blog to give vent to her changing emotions, she explores what her cancer diagnosis means.

Learn more about the topics raised with our free resources

Episodes in this series

Episode Description
Episode 1 In the first episode of The Big C and Me we meet three people with the hope of being cleared of cancer and look at... Read more
Episode 2 In the second episode of The Big C & Me we meet an 83 year old with pancreatic cancer, a nine year old whose local... Read more
Episode 3 In the final episode of The Big C & Me we follow three people who face life or death with severe or terminal cancer -... Read more

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