Working Life with Dr Vincent Carroll

Dr Vincent Carroll, GP, Public Health Doctor and chair of ARC Cancer Support Centres

Working Life with Dr Vincent Carroll

Dr Vincent Carroll, GP, Public Health Doctor and chair of ARC Cancer Support Centres


I organise breakfast and plan for the day ahead.


I live in Sandymount and have the good fortune to have the shortest commute in Dublin to work. I simply stroll down the basement stairs to my GP practice.


Today, I am visiting the ARC centre on Eccles St, near the Mater Private. It’s a 40-minute walk across town and I make a point of going there to get to know our volunteers personally and to thank them for the wonderful work they do.

All services — psychological, educational and practical support, complementary therapies and counselling services — are provided by professional staff and trained volunteers and are free of charge.

The genesis of ARC was in the realisation that even when a doctor’s work in treating a person with cancer is done, there is a need to provide ongoing psycho-social support. ARC has a community-based approach, recognising that cancer impacts more than just the individual.


I have a meeting with Deirdre Grant, CEO of ARC Cancer Support Centres. We discuss fundraising, including an upcoming fashion show in March, and volunteer recruitment. We are constantly on the look-out for new volunteers, people who can help make our centres a home-from-home, because a lot of our clients are incredibly distressed when they come to us.

Last year, more than 16,000 people came into our drop-in centres at Eccles St and South Circular Road, many from the oncology departments at nearby hospitals. People can walk in, there is no form-filling, we are simply there to provide support to patients and their families. This year, ARC celebrates 25 years.


I head back across town to my own practice to see more patients in the afternoon.


I have lectures to prepare for my students at Lansdowne College of Acupuncture and Complementary Medicine where I am college director. I’ve a longstanding interest in complementary medicine, having studied acupuncture and traditional Chinese plant-based medicines. Some of my students go on to offer services such as reflexology and head massage free of charge at ARC. I encourage them to give something back.

- For more information on services and supports offered free of charge by ARC Cancer Support Centres, see:

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