Cancer unit is praised for support

A HOSPITAL’s cancer clinic has been praised for the support it gives to patients when they are first told they have the disease.

Reviewers have commended Kettering General Hospital’s urology oncology results clinic, praising it as an example to be followed nationally in the manner it deals with patients who have just been told the devastating news.

Urology cancer includes bladder, prostate and kidney, and the hospital has to break the news to almost 400 people each year.

Jonathan Mack, 69, from Corby, who was diagnosed with prostate cancer at the end of last year, said: “I was very impressed. You speak to both the consultant and the nurse specialists and they are both very supportive.

“Together they give you the full picture of what is happening and what your tests mean to you and what will happen next in terms of treatment.

“If you have any practical problems the nurses are very good at sorting it out for you and they are always there for you.”

In January a Urology Service National Peer Review Team visited the hospital and, as part of its review, looked at the urology oncology results clinic.

The hospital set up the clinic in a quiet room within the hospital’s treatment centre so patients who have just received their diagnosis can be seen by a consultant and a cancer nurse specialist for further information and support.

Urology cancer lead clinician, Mr Mo Al-Sudani, said: “Each year we have about 385 new urology cancer diagnoses – this means that urological cancers are the most common cancers dealt with by the medical and surgical specialities in the hospital.

“They include things like prostate, kidney, bladder and testes cancers.

“About 18 months ago we created the urology oncology results clinics because we felt it was inappropriate to be breaking bad news to patients in the context of routine – and normally busy – urology outpatients’ clinics.

“This means we are able to discuss the diagnosis, further investigations, possible courses of treatment and give them information about their condition and what to expect.”

Urology oncology clinical nurse specialist, Rachel Hooper, said: “It is a big benefit for patients to see both a consultant and a nurse specialist at these clinics.

“It helps them to get all the appropriate information and support at what can be a very distressing time for a family.”