Health Service Focus

09.12.16

Cancer patients at the helm of service redesign

Source: NHE Nov/Dec 16

As part of its health devolution programme, Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) explains how patients were given a major voice in overhauling the region’s cancer services. NHE’s Luana Salles reports.

As part of its acute standardisation programme, GMCA has invited cancer patients in the region to help design a specialist surgical centre that will see services consolidated in Salford Royal Hospital. 

Over recent months, patients with stomach and gullet cancers have met with doctors and NHS managers to help shape the bespoke programme in accordance to their specific needs. For example, whilst Salford Royal will now conduct the vast majority of surgery, outpatient appointments will remain local as per the specific request of patients. 

Salford Royal already carries out the majority of these yearly operations, with the remaining being undertaken at Manchester Royal Infirmary and Wythenshawe Hospital. But under proposed changes, in which doctors and nurses from all three providers had a say, the Salford hospital – which is part of one of the country’s top-rated trusts – will amalgamate the expertise and experience around oesophago-gastric (OG) cancer into one dedicated team, which GMCA expects will enable more consistent high-quality care. 

GM Health and Social Care Partnership worked with individuals affected by these cancers through patient groups, such as the OG Patient Association and the Upper-gastrointestinal (UGI) Support Group, to address existing service inconsistencies. 

As a patient… 

For example, Sue Kernaghan, a patient representative who sat on the External Clinical Assurance Panel, was diagnosed with breast cancer 14 years ago. After nine months of treatment and a job swap, she was asked to become a patient representative in Merseyside, which eventually led her to chairing a patient group in Chester and sitting on several clinical network groups – one of which was for UGI cancer. Whilst sitting on the latter, she was diagnosed with GIST, a rare UGI cancer that saw part of her stomach removed. 

“It is amazingly powerful to speak at these meetings and start a sentence with ‘as a patient’,” she said. “The professionals listen to you and respect our input. We have had many successes of tweaking the system for the good of patients. 

“When asked if I could sit on a group in GM, I was delighted to bring my patient experience to the table to give patients a voice, shape good practice and make a difference. As I was from outside the area, I didn’t have any preconceptions and could give my view. The group also included two eminent UGI surgeons who have national recognition for their expertise, an oncologist, a clinical nurse specialist and manager. 

“It was a truly multidisciplinary team and all key parts of someone’s day-to-day experience in hospital. I feel proud that there are a set of standards, developed by patients and professionals.” 

Kernaghan acknowledged that there have been challenges, but argued the team never lost sight of the need to make “meaningful change” for the region’s residents – starting from scratch, from diagnosis through to recovery. 

“I’ve helped ensure that referral pathways to other parts of the hospital were in place, such as referral to psychological support,” she added. “I feel it is important that we develop specialised centres like this one. In rarer cancers, the surgical expertise needs to be brought together under one roof. I would rather be operated on by a surgeon who is doing these operations time and time again and has the expertise needed for someone like me.” 

Lord Peter Smith, chair of the GM Health and Social Care Partnership, said the news, although still in its infancy, was a “fantastic example of transforming live-saving care and making a difference” so that every person in the region has access to consistent care and support. 

The organisation’s chief officer, Jon Rouse (more on page 22), also revealed that as well as reaching a decision on OG cancer, the GMCA is aiming to publish its cancer strategy in December as part of a series of quality-focused programmes, although he admitted this might slip to January.

For more information

W: www.gmhsc.org.uk

Tell us what you think – have your say below or email opinion@nationalhealthexecutive.com

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

national health executive tv

more videos >

latest healthcare news

Nearly a quarter of reception children in England overweight

20/10/2017Nearly a quarter of reception children in England overweight

Nearly a quarter of school children in reception classes in England are overweight – and the figure goes up to almost a third by year six. ... more >
Scrapping staff assault data collection to create ‘dangerous blind spot’

20/10/2017Scrapping staff assault data collection to create ‘dangerous blind spot’

The government has revealed that it will no longer keep regularly tracking NHS staff assaults. Since NHS Protect was scrapped this year, the... more >
MPs endorse Baroness Harding as new NHSI chair

20/10/2017MPs endorse Baroness Harding as new NHSI chair

The government’s Health Select Committee has endorsed Baroness Harding as the next chair of NHS Improvement (NHSI). The committee look... more >

editor's comment

25/09/2017A hotbed of innovation

This edition of NHE comes hot on the heels of this year’s NHS Expo which, once again, proved to be a huge success at Manchester Central. A number of announcements were made during the event, with the health secretary naming the second wave of NHS digital pioneers, or ‘fast followers’, which follow the initial global digital e... read more >

last word

The Refugee Doctor Initiative

The Refugee Doctor Initiative

Terry John, co-chair of the BMA & BDA Refugee Doctors and Dentists Liaison Group and chair of the union’s international committee, talks about a brilliant initiative that is proving mut... more > more last word articles >
681 149x260 NHE Subscribe button

the scalpel's daily blog

Our Health Heroes: NHS awards ceremony unveils shortlist

18/10/2017Our Health Heroes: NHS awards ceremony unveils shortlist

With the NHS facing unprecedented demand and difficult working conditions, it’s incredible that the workforce across the country still delivers great care to patients every single day. Requiring care is never a pleasant experience, but having a brilliant member of staff look after can make a huge difference to a quick recovery. For that reason, it’s important to recognise the support staff who work so hard to give patients p... more >
read more blog posts from 'the scalpel' >

comment

Make doing the right thing easy

11/10/2017Make doing the right thing easy

Kay Currie, professor of Nursing & Applied Healthcare Research, ‘Safeguarding Health through Infection Prevention’ (SHIP) researc... more >
STAR: an innovative app for speech therapy

11/10/2017STAR: an innovative app for speech therapy

Dr Stuart Cunningham, a senior lecturer in Human Communication Sciences at the University of Sheffield, on a new app set to support speech and la... more >
The value of health creation

11/10/2017The value of health creation

Dr Brian Fisher, vice chair of the New NHS Alliance, outlines the many benefits of investing in health creation. We live in one of the riche... more >
Developing a new type of think tank

11/10/2017Developing a new type of think tank

James Roach of the National Collaborative Group explains how the new and unique think tank is moving from rhetoric to action in order to help del... more >
A digital framework that works for the NHS

09/10/2017A digital framework that works for the NHS

In response to the ever-increasing opportunities to use innovative digital technology to carry out essential admin tasks, NHS Shared Business Ser... more >

interviews

Tackling infection prevention locally

04/10/2017Tackling infection prevention locally

Dr Emma Burnett, a lecturer and researcher in infection prevention at the University of Dundee’s School of Nursing and Midwifery and a boar... more >
Scan4Safety: benefits across the whole supply chain

02/10/2017Scan4Safety: benefits across the whole supply chain

NHE interviews Gillian Fox, head of eProcurement (Scan4Safety) programme at NHS Supply Chain. How has the Scan4Safety initiative evolved sin... more >
Simon Stevens: A hunger for innovation

25/09/2017Simon Stevens: A hunger for innovation

Simon Stevens, chief executive of NHS England, knows that the health service is already a world leader when it comes to medical advances – ... more >
Improving care at the touch of a screen

08/08/2017Improving care at the touch of a screen

When it comes to dementia, having a calm and safe environment can have a substantial impact on a patient’s quality of life. NHE’s Jos... more >
A new approach to talent management

25/07/2017A new approach to talent management

Martin Hancock, national lead for talent management at NHS Leadership Academy, and Gill Rooke, the organisation’s senior operations manager... more >