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Harrogate and District NHS Trust
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Harrogate Still Number 1 in England for Cancer Care

Harrogate District Hospital has maintained its number 1 rating in the whole of England, according to a league table measuring patient experience. The Hospital’s success comes as work is about to start on building a major new cancer centre at the Hospital.

The league table, based on the latest Cancer Patient Experience Survey, provides the opportunity to compare the performance of hospitals across the whole of England. The table measures cancer patients’ experience while being treated at hospital. This includes, for example: if there were enough nurses on duty, whether they were given enough support from health and social services when they left hospital, whether they were given the right emotional support or told about financial information.

Andrew Alldred, Clinical Director for Cancer and Clinical Support Services at Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust, said:

“In Harrogate, we recognise that treating people with cancer is not just about having the right chemotherapy, but that giving them emotional support and help for when they leave hospital is also crucial. Our service offers all of this, utilising the strengths of a whole range of teams, to ensure that our patients and their families receive the very best care. We are delighted that Macmillan’s survey has shown that we are taking the right approach as far as patients are concerned and we will be looking to build on that in the future.”

Paula Middlebrook, Lead Cancer Nurse, commented:

“We are delighted to be identified for the second year running as the top performing Trust. This survey is so important as it covers the patient experience from the first time they see their GP, through tests, how they were told about their cancer diagnosis, treatment and overall support throughout both their hospital and community care.  Since the last results we have continued to work hard to strive towards excellence in our cancer care.  This has also resulted in improvements in a wide range of areas. Achieving such high performance is reliant upon all staff who contribute to patient care both within the hospital and community.”

At the same time, work is starting on construction of the £9 million Sir Robert Ogden Macmillan Centre. The facility, funded by £3 million donations from local businessman Sir Robert Ogden and Macmillan Cancer Support and another £2 million investment from Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust, will offer a wide range of treatments and support not currently available to cancer patients in Harrogate and the wider North Yorkshire area.

Paula Middlebrook continued:

“The Sir Robert Ogden Macmillan Centre will provide excellent information, treatment and support under one roof. The new unit will improve even further the experience for patients having chemotherapy. An information resource area, financial and benefit advice, increased access to complementary therapies and better facilities for counselling and support will be available for all patients regardless of where they have treatment.

A key focus of the new unit will be on the provision of supportive care for both patient and carer with greater emphasis upon meeting the needs of people as they get on with their lives ‘after cancer’.

We have worked with service users to design the building  in order to be patient centred, whilst still maintaining the same high quality safety standards expected from a high class hospital.”

Chief Executive of Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust, Richard Ord said:

“The new unit will enable us to carry out a wider range of treatments that patients currently have to travel elsewhere to receive.

We are extremely grateful for the generosity of Sir Robert Ogden and Macmillan Cancer Support, who are each donating £3.5 million towards the scheme. Without their help, we would not be able to go ahead.”