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Investment In Hospitals Would Improve Services For People With Cancer

People with cancer or suspected cancer would receive faster, safer, and higher quality care, under proposals being put forward by hospital doctors as part of a public consultation.

Proposals to invest up to £900 million across hospitals in north and mid Hampshire would see a brand new cancer treatment centre developed at a new specialist acute hospital, which would be built on the current Basingstoke Hospital site, or near to Junction 7 of the M3.

Speaking in advance of World Cancer Day on Sunday 4 February, Dr Charlotte Hutchings, a local GP and Clinical Director for North and Mid Hampshire at NHS Hampshire and Isle of Wight Integrated Care Board, said:

“We want to significantly improve the quality of care that we provide to people with cancer, and with suspected cancer.

“We want to make sure diagnostic tests and scans are easy to access, with results available swiftly. New ‘one-stop’ clinics will mean patients can combine three or four traditional outpatient appointments into one visit, and rapid results from tests will mean we can start their treatment sooner."


The new cancer treatment centre would be based at the specialist acute hospital.

Bringing cancer specialists together onto one site would mean experts are working alongside each other every day, making it easier to discuss specialist treatments, discuss latest research, and offer patients the chance to take part in clinical trials for new treatments.

The proposals would see most surgery for cancer carried out at the new dedicated planned surgery centre at Winchester, which would aim to improve quality, and clinical outcomes, as experienced surgeons would see and treat more cases than they do now, with cancer services split over two sites.

Furthermore, because planned surgery and emergency surgery would take place in separate hospitals under the proposals, people’s planned cancer operations are less likely to be cancelled at short notice because beds, operating theatres and staff are needed to deal with emergency admissions.

Having cancer specialists located in the same centre, rather than split across two sites, would enable clinicians to make decisions and treatment recommendations more rapidly. These include:
 

  • surgery: which would be undertaken at Winchester hospital if it is not complex, or at the specialist acute hospital if services such as critical care are required
     
  • oncology: the proposals would see a ‘one-stop’ outpatient assessment and a dedicated cancer ward at the new hospital (currently there is no dedicated ward in either Basingstoke or Winchester hospital)
     
  • chemotherapy: teams would aim to deliver chemotherapy in patients’ own homes or as locally as possible, with intravenous chemotherapy provided from the cancer treatment centre, co-located with inpatient cancer services
     
  • radiotherapy (for adults): would be provided from the new specialist acute hospital, closely networked with University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust (UHS) and other NHS organisations to ensure all patients get the best care, regardless of where they live. Radiotherapy for children will continue to be provided by specialist centres as it is currently
  • children’s cancer services: by bringing services together on one site, clinicians would be able to offer chemotherapy without the need for children and families to stay overnight, for the first time. This would benefit families as it is quicker, requires less travel, and means children spend less time in hospital
  • supportive care: this would be provided at home, in the community, and in the patient’s most local hospital possible, supporting people to keep as well as possible during and after treatment
     
  • diagnostics and treatment: such as endoscopies or blood transfusions, would be provided as locally as possible, including at the new cancer treatment centre
  • palliative (end of life) care: would be based on the patient’s choice and would be provided either in the patient’s home, hospices, or through hospice and outpatient services as locally as possible.

Get involved and have your say

To find out more, attend an event, or complete the questionnaire, visit www.hampshiretogether.nhs.uk. The consultation is open until midnight on 17 March 2024.

There is a listening event for people with lived experience of cancer on Wednesday 14 February, from 10.30am until 12noon. Register online.

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