SUTTON PROSTATE CANCER SCHEME SUCCESS
A project set-up to help Sutton residents recover from prostate cancer has been hailed as a significant success.
Established with over £100,000 of funding from Macmillan Cancer Support, the ‘Sutton Prostate Cancer Follow-up Service’ has enabled many prostate cancer patients to be cared for closer to home, without the need for unnecessary trips to hospital.
An evaluation[i] of the service found that in addition to empowering residents to be treated in their community, it has also helped improved capacity at local hospital, Epsom and St Helier NHS Trust, as patients could instead attend their GP surgery for routine follow-up appointments.
The report also found that the scheme had empowered primary care clinicians – by increasing awareness of post-treatment complications, improving access to training resources and by building stronger working relationships between local primary care and hospital-based teams.
Dr Zaitun Ahmed-Jushuf, Macmillan GP for Sutton, said:
“We’re thrilled that this project has had such a positive impact – for both patients and staff alike. Patients can now get their prostate reviews done with their GP or Practice Nurse, alongside their other health conditions. And our community-based healthcare professionals are better equipped to support local prostate cancer patients. The follow-up service has provided a more local and cost-effective solution, which is vital, as the number of people living with cancer increase.
“We also know how worrying uncertainty can be, so the fact that this project has improved waiting times for those people being referred to the hospital’s urology department for the first time, cannot be underestimated.”