Changes to chemotherapy services at BHRUT

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Summary of report content

Healthwatch Redbridge, Healthwatch Havering, and Healthwatch Barking and Dagenham held a focus group in March 2019 to gather the views of people using chemotherapy services at Barking and Dagenham, Havering and Redbridge University Trust (BHRUT) and their carers. This work was requested by the Outer North East London Joint Health Scrutiny Committee. The chemotherapy service was changed in October 2018 without consultation and now provides chemotherapy from the Queens Hospital site in Romford.

Feedback identified a number of key issues including: limited privacy on the ward; staffing levels putting staff under pressure; limited information provided about services, the ward and treatment prior to treatment starting; concerns about parking facilities; the clinic service seeming overloaded; concerns about the appointment booking system; long waits for treatment, medication and blood tests; and concerns when accessing the Accident and Emergency Department. Positive feedback was received from those who had used the Cedar Centre and about the ward staff and volunteers.

The report makes recommendations in the following areas: clinical leads from urgent and emergency care meeting their counterparts in oncology to agree protocols for dealing with cancer patients in A&E; addressing the lack of privacy, cramped space and lack of natural light on the ward; improving access to parking facilities and assessment for patient transport; reviewing the system for booking both oncology and chemotherapy appointments; addressing issues identified by patients and their carers through surveys and questionnaires; reviewing the phlebotomy service; increasing awareness of the Cedar Centre services available; reviewing the types of services being offered to identify why they are not being used by particular community groups; providing people with better information and support in accessing pharmacy services;  and reviewing the way patients and carers are involved in the development of the service.

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General details

Report title 
Changes to chemotherapy services at BHRUT
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Barking And Dagenham
Healthwatch Havering
Healthwatch Redbridge
Date of publication 
Thursday, 16 May, 2019
Date evidence capture began 
Wednesday, 27 March, 2019
Date evidence capture finished 
Wednesday, 27 March, 2019
Type of report 
Key themes 
Booking appointments
Car parking access
Car parking charges
Cleanliness hygiene and infection control
Communication between staff and patients
Holistic support
Information providing
Public involvement
Quality of care
Quality of treatment
Service delivery organisation and staffing
Staff levels
Waiting time to be seen once arrived at appointment
Healthwatch reference number 

Methodology and approach

Primary research method used 
Focus group
How was the information collected? 
If an Enter and View methodology was applied, was the visit announced or unannounced? 

Details of health and care services included in the report

Secondary care services 
Cancer services
Accident & emergency
Other services 
Patient transport

Details about conditions and diseases

Conditions or diseases 

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
Age group 
Specific ethnicity if known 
Sexual orientation 
Not known
Does the information include public's views? 
Does the information include carer's, friend's or relative's views? 
Does the information include staff's views? 
Types of health and care professionals engaged 
Does the information include other people's views? 
What was the main sentiment of the people who shared their views? 

Outcomes and impact

Were recommendations made by local Healthwatch in the report? 
Does the information contain a response from a provider? 
Is there evidence of impact in the report? 
Is there evidence of impact external to the report? 

Network Impact
Relationships that exist locally, regionally, nationally have benefited from the work undertaken in the report
Implied Impact
Where it is implied that change may occur in the future as a result of Healthwatch work. This can be implied in a provider  response, press release or other source. Implied impact can become tangible impact once change has occurred.
Tangible Impact
There is evidence of change that can be directly attributed to Healthwatch work undertaken in the report.