Norfolk patients to get cancer care closer to home with new Mobile Cancer Care Unit
An innovative partnership between Cancer charity Hope for Tomorrow and the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital will enable chemotherapy and other cancer drug therapies to be delivered in a mobile cancer care unit.
The new state-of-the-art unit will be launched in the summer of 2020 thanks to support from ‘Hope for Tomorrow’ and a generous donation from the Mark Benevolent Fund.
It will treat up to 16 patients a day and is designed to travel to different locations around Norfolk, delivering cancer care in up to five different venues a week. Locations are being considered in the run up to the launch and include Dereham, Fakenham, Beccles and Attleborough. North Norfolk is covered by separate developments at Cromer and District Hospital.
Leanda Bickley, Hope for Tomorrow Operations Manager, says: “We are very excited to be partnering with NNUH. This will be our 11th operational unit helping to bring cancer care closer to patients in such a rural area. We already have a great working relationship with the trust and look forward to developing this further to make the mobile unit a success.”
The staffing costs will be covered by the Norfolk and Norwich Hospitals Charity for the first three years of operation to get the service underway before handing over to the hospital.
Jo Richardson, Lead Cancer Nurse for NNUH, says: “This is a fantastic opportunity for our patients to receive treatment closer to their home. Norfolk is a large rural county with limited transport links; by offering treatment closer to home we can reduce additional anxiety and costs of traveling into Norwich.”
The Mobile Cancer Care Unit (MCCU) is owned and maintained by Hope for Tomorrow and will be provided along with a Nurses’ Support Vehicle (NSV) which allows the nursing team to travel to and from the daily locations of the MCCU. The locations will be decided based on patient numbers and accessibility.
Hope for Tomorrow are an award winning charity whose MCCUs across the country have been recognised for the care closer to home they have been delivering since 2007 when they launched the world’s first MCCU. In 2016 the charity won a prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise, in the Innovation category, a rare accolade for a charity.