Launch of NNUH breast care pledge
BBC Look East presenter Susie Fowler-Watt will launch the Breakthrough Breast Cancer’s Service Pledge for Breast Cancer on Tuesday 12 June at Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, following a joint project with the charity Breakthrough Breast Cancer.
The Breakthrough Service Pledge for Breast Cancer was developed by the charity as a tool for health professionals and their patients to work together towards better breast cancer services.
Patients who have undergone surgery at Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital were asked about the services they received and about any improvements they would like to see. The Service Pledge outlines suggestions made by patients which the hospital is now working towards. They include:
Providing patients with information about psychological, social, spiritual and financial support.
Increasing the number of ‘one-stop’ clinics per week from two mornings to four mornings, to make waiting areas less crowded and to reduce waiting times
Offering patients the opportunity to see photos showing the results of breast surgery and reconstructions to reassure and help them to make informed decisions.
Including advice and information on healthy eating and exercise after surgery in the patient information booklet.
Improving the information and advice given to patients on discharge by providing both visual and written information.
Every person diagnosed with breast cancer at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital will receive a copy of the Service Pledge, letting them know the services they can expect, how the unit intends to improve its service and how patients can let them know if they think something can be done better.
Breast care nurse Sandra Griffiths, who is leading the project at the hospital along with Reconstruction Specialist Nurse Ruth Harcourt, said: We already have an excellent support and information service at the hospital’s unique Big C Centre and Breakthrough Breast Cancer’s Service Pledge for Breast Cancer seemed to be a natural next step to show the hospital’s commitment to improve the patient experience.
The feedback from our patients was very encouraging and we look forward to implementing many of the changes they suggested in order to improve the quality of our service. We believe all women should have access to the best possible breast cancer services and are committed to working with Breakthrough and our patients to achieve this.
BBC Look East presenter Susie Fowler-Watt, commented: I am delighted to help launch the Breakthrough Service Pledge for Breast Cancer at Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital. Sadly, one in nine UK women will develop breast cancer during their lifetime. Consulting patients about what improvements matter most to them means staff at the hospital can offer an even better service. The Service Pledge for Breast Cancer will help reassure patients that the hospital is committed to providing the services and support they need and deserve.
Jeremy Hughes, Chief Executive of Breakthrough Breast Cancer, said: We are delighted that Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital has signed up to Breakthrough’s Service Pledge for Breast Cancer. ‘User involvement’ is a familiar phrase and a key requirement for those working in the health sector, but listening to what patients have to say about their experience of care and working to improve those areas is often easier said than done.
It is vital that the nearly 44,000 women diagnosed with breast cancer each year in the UK receive a speedy diagnosis and the highest quality treatment, care and information. Services may differ across the country but the pursuit of high standards should be universal. We believe that by using Breakthrough’s Service Pledge for Breast Cancer, the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital can play its part in achieving this goal.
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Notes for editors
1. The Service Pledge for Breast Cancer is part of Breakthrough’s Rights & Realities campaign – a long term initiative to help breast cancer patients get the best out of the health system – and was informed by a public consultation exercise conducted by the charity of over 700 organisations and individuals with an interest in breast cancer, from October 2002 – April 2003.
2. Breakthrough Breast Cancer is a charity committed to fighting breast cancer through research and education and has established the UK’s first dedicated breast cancer research centre.
3. For more information about Breakthrough Breast Cancer please visit www.breakthrough.org.uk or call 08080 100 200.