Royal Devon & Exeter Trust
FORCE cancer charity funds chemotherapy first in Okehampton – this is exactly the kind of service we need in Seaton
Encouraging news – the RD&E and FORCE have agreed that the cancer charity will deliver chemotherapy to patients in Okehampton Community Hospital.
The RD&E press release also says ‘It is hoped that the service will also be offered at a third location in East Devon later this year.’
We have an active local fund-raising group for FORCE – I was at a well-attended coffee morning in Colyton Town Hall three months ago – and this is exactly the kind of service that we would benefit from in the wider Seaton area, with our elderly population. This is the kind of thing we need to discuss in the community conversation on health matters which will take place in March, and I very much hope FORCE will be able to come.
The press release adds:
The charity began funding a pilot outreach chemotherapy project at Tiverton Hospital in July. The feedback from patients and nursing staff has been so positive that it is being rolled out as quickly as possible in Okehampton.
The benefits to patients include:
- Treatment closer to home so less travelling time and expense
- Easier parking
- Quieter location and treatment area
- Reduced waiting time for treatment, both in Okehampton and Exeter
- Experienced oncology staff from the hospital to deliver treatment
- Access to additional FORCE services to support you and your family
CCG, RD&E speakers at Honiton community event to begin ‘co-designing and co-producing’ local health services/activities – we need a similar meeting in Seaton too
The new model of care is working, they say, but patients who could have been treated in Seaton Hospital are still bed-blocking in the RD&E
Below is the RD&E’s latest publicity leaflet for the ‘new model of care’ boasting ‘no complaints’ from people who were treated between 28 August and 10 September. On the reverse side it features Doug – is it a coincidence that he is from Seaton? – who has had a knee amputation and is being cared for at home after two weeks on an acute ward. He says, ‘I cannot praise enough the wonderful care and treatment I have received right through from the surgical team to the community healthcare professionals. The skills and attention to detail they have shown is remarkable. It’s been a pleasure having them in my home.’
I am sure that the dedicated professionals working in the new system are doing their best for the patients. But are all the people who would have been transferred to the community hospitals actually getting the treatment at home which they are promised by ‘Your Future Care’? At the same time I received this comment from a Seaton resident: ‘A friend of mine’s husband has been in the RD&E for about 10 days. He could have come home 4 days ago, but there was no home care arranged for him – no one available to do the job, so his wife is paying privately to get help, and he will now be coming home some time on Sunday. He will have been bed blocking for 1 WEEK. It says it all doesn’t it?’