Patients requiring certain injections and infusions as part of their care for oncology, respiratory and dermatology are now being treated at a LloydsPharmacy Healthcare Centre in Scunthorpe thanks to a partnership developed with Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust (NLaG).
The community infusion clinic, the first of its type in the United Kingdom, is located adjacent to the LloydsPharmacy on Marsden Drive in the town and is already proving to be a real success.
It will be officially opened by Anne Shaw, NLaG chair, and Toby Anderson, CEO of McKesson UK (which includes LloydsPharmacy), at a ceremony on Wednesday January 16 at 11am.
Until the clinic opened patients needing treatment had to visit the hospital which took time and, sometimes, made them anxious. Now they can be booked in to a slot at the clinic which suits them and means they spend less time getting their vital medicines.
The first patient who used the clinic, and who has now completed her treatment, is Sue. She said: “When I was diagnosed with cancer I really thought my life was over. Thankfully I’m still here. I’m not a sick person, I’m someone getting better.
“I was so relieved I didn’t have to visit the hospital for my treatment. The healthcare centre was great; I felt less anxious, it was more convenient for me and overall it was a really friendly atmosphere.
“The centre is fantastic. As the first patient to have gone through treatment at the centre I couldn’t recommend it enough. Receiving any kind of treatment for cancer is difficult, but the set up at the clinic made everything easier.”
Since the clinic opened in March 2018, more than 140 treatments have been administered to patients. Each patient is carefully assessed by a clinician at the Trust to make sure the clinic is appropriate for them before being referred. Patients say going to the clinic is more convenient for them and it also means the Trust can see other patients in the hospital more quickly.
Paulash Haider, assistant chief pharmacist – business development at NLaG, said: “This ground breaking and innovative service, which has been developed in partnership between the Trust and LloydsPharmacy, is exactly what we should be doing. It means patients can access care closer to home rather than having to come to hospital. This is better for them, better for us and fits with the government’s long term plan to treat more patients in their own community.
“I’m proud of this new approach to providing care and to be the first Trust in the country to be working like this. We are already planning with LloydsPharmacy for similar clinics in
Grimsby and in discussion about what else we might be able to do together.”
David Willis, national speciality development manager at LloydsPharmacy, said: “The launch of this new service is a massive step forward in offering patients easier and more convenient access to receive their treatment while supporting busy specialty teams in the hospital.
“Having access to the healthcare centre means that patients can receive traditional hospital-based treatments in the community so their condition is less disruptive to their life. It allows patients to spend less time on the things they have to do and more time to do the things they want to do.
“The service also massively benefits the busy hospital, creating precious capacity for clinical teams to maintain and improve access to care. We are proud of our partnership and how this positive development is delivering a truly innovative integrated community service.
“The positive patient feedback supports the on-going demand to explore more and more pathways and specialties to open up access to more patients.”