Cancer patients treated closer to home

No smoking signs at MK hospital'''Wk 7   MPMC
No smoking signs at MK hospital'''Wk 7 MPMC

Cancer patients are now able to get treatment closer to home, as Milton Keynes Hospital steps up its chemotherapy service.

Since April, the hospital has been seeing twice as many patients for chemotherapy treatment. Previously they would have to travel to Northampton.

Sally Burnie, Milton Keynes Hospital’s head of cancer services and lead cancer nurse, said: “We know how important it is for patients to receive their care as close to home as possible. When you are being treated for cancer, it is a particularly challenging time physically and emotionally, and every extra mile for treatment makes a difference. So we are delighted that we are able to help more local patients get the care they need without the extra travel.”

Milton Keynes Hospital had been carrying out between 700 and 800 oncology treatments per year. This has been increased by a further 700 treatments.

Simon Stokes is one of the patients whose treatment has been moved from Northampton to Milton Keynes.

He said: “The hand-over process was good and things were followed up quickly. It is much better having everything together in one place. I’m from Milton Keynes and it is much more convenient for me coming here.”

The additional patients have been treated by the hospital’s cancer services team, who believe passionately in the need to help patients locally. Now they have demonstrated that the extended service can work, the hospital is now looking to recruit extra staff to ensure the service’s long term stability.

Sally said: “I’d like to thank all the staff for their dedication and professionalism in making this possible. They have worked many long hours but their passion shone through - they are a real asset to Milton Keynes.”

While this change brings back a substantial number of Milton Keynes patients, a smaller number will remain temporarily with Northampton. Milton Keynes Hospital hopes to give these remaining patients an opportunity to receive their treatment locally in the near future.