A review into the services provided at Mount Vernon Cancer Centre “is at a critical phase“, according to NHS England and NHS Improvement.
The NHS in the East of England and in North London is working with the staff at Mount Vernon, with other local hospitals and commissioners, and with the local cancer alliances to look at how to meet the needs of local people.
The aim is to develop options building on the services, research and patient experience the centre already delivers.
The NHS is “midway through a series of location-based online engagement events, and hopes to increase the involvement of patients, families and carers from the Bedfordshire and Luton areas“.
The county’s “residents have long travel times to Mount Vernon in Northwood, once referred for treatment, and data indicates that radiotherapy uptake is low“.
And those living “in the Luton Clinical Commissioning Group footprint have poor cancer outcomes“.
Partnerships and public engagement officer for East of England direct commissioning Kevin Roos said: “It’s important we hear from residents, so we can understand the effect any changes to the service may have.
“And hearing the views of patients and carers is a vital and necessary part of that review.”
The cancer centre in Middlesex is run by East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust and managed by the Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
It provides outpatient chemotherapy, brachytherapy and haematology, and radiotherapy, as well as inpatient and ambulatory wards.
The patient pathways involve a large number of other hospitals and arrangements with several other NHS trusts.
The services are commissioned by NHS England’s Specialised Commissioning team and local clinical commissioning groups.
It serves a population of more than two million people in south Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire, North West London and Berkshire.
“The help and support of colleagues and partners is vital to help publicise these events,” explained Mr Roos.
“The review website is a useful source of information and offers opportunities to consult in different ways.
“Links for booking on to the online sessions can be found there, with two for Luton on Monday (Feb 22nd) at 6.30pm and on Monday March 22nd at 12pm, and one for Bedfordshire on Wednesday March 17th at 6.30pm.
“Any support you can give is much appreciated, and will help ensure that the patient voice is at the heart of changes to your NHS,” he added.
“We can also offer to set up an online meeting specifically for a group or charity that you may be a part of.”