19 January 2022

Collaboration between hospital and medical centre enables cancer patients to be treated closer to home

Patients undergoing treatment for cancer will now be able to receive some of their treatment closer to home due to a partnership between Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Burleigh Medical Centre in Barnsley.

Known as WestonPark@BurleighMedicalCentre, it is an extension of the day-case unit at Weston Park Cancer Centre in Sheffield and consists of a dedicated treatment suite at the medical centre with seven treatment chairs where suitable patients will be able to receive systemic anti-cancer therapy (SACT).

The new unit will be a nurse and pharmacy led service with staff from Weston Park who are employed by Sheffield Teaching Hospitals.

This new collaboration will mean that some patients from the Barnsley area who currently have to travel to Sheffield for their cancer treatment will now be able to receive treatment closer to home.

The service at Burleigh will be open for treatment from 21st January 2022 on a phased basis, initially commencing two days a week on Thursdays and Fridays and extending to additional days over the coming months.

While many patients will be suitable for treatment at Burleigh, those requiring more specialist or trial treatment or undergoing SACT and radiotherapy treatment at the same time will continue to be treated at Weston Park Cancer Centre.

WestonPark@BurleighMedicalCentre is in addition to the existing unit at Barnsley Hospital, which will continue to deliver SACT treatments to patients.

Dr Lucy Walkington, Clinical Director for Specialist Cancer Services at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals, said: “We are delighted to have been able to work with our colleagues at NHS Barnsley CCG and Burleigh Medical Centre to establish this service.

“Where it is clinically appropriate, delivering treatment closer to home is better for patients, some of whom otherwise have to travel a considerable distance. This collaboration will enable patients to attend treatment more easily and stay closer to their local support networks.

“All centres will work closely together to ensure that patients get the treatment they need in an appropriate location. The aspiration is that as the service is established all suitable patients local to Barnsley will be able to receive SACT treatment in the Barnsley area.”

Dr Madhavi Guntamukkala, medical director at NHS Barnsley CCG said: “We have excellent cancer care services here in Barnsley and at Weston Park and this is a fantastic opportunity to improve people’s experience and outcomes. Treatment for cancer can often be tiring and with this new option we can take some of that additional stress and exhaustion of travel out of it. People have told us that having expert staff, working in a place where they have access to the right facilities, is what really matters when it comes to bringing services out into local communities like this. That’s what we’ll have here, which so many Barnsley people will be able to benefit from.”

The WestonPark@ project is part of wider work funded by the South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw ICS Cancer Alliance to bring more cancer treatments closer to home across the region.

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