Fareham chemo unit provides treatment closer to home
A new chemotherapy unit at Fareham Community Hospital in Hampshire has recently welcomed its first patients.
The £147,000 project to create it was part funded by Community Health Partnerships (CHP), with CHP contributing £72,000, and the remainder covered by Portsmouth Hospitals University NHS Trust (PHU).
Having identified the need to increase chemotherapy capacity locally, the Trust required an existing meeting room at the hospital to be transformed into clinical space incorporating 10 new chemotherapy chairs. The build was facilitated by CHP’s LIFTCo partner, Solent Estates Partnership, working with the CCG, PHU, tenants, and the CHP Property team. The new unit will offer up to 375 hours of treatment time annually, ‘while delivering vital services closer to home within a primary care setting, rather than patients having to travel to the nearest acute hospital’.
The PHU-run Regional Cancer Centre sees patients from across south-east Hampshire and West Sussex – most requiring chemotherapy must attend Portsmouth’s Queen Alexandra Hospital. Demand on cancer services is growing year on year, with new treatments meaning many patients experience a longer life expectancy. Hazel Hartnett, Deputy divisional nurse director, and Senior Matron for Cancer, explained:
“Patients coming in for chemotherapy treatment often feel poorly and tired. Many must rely on friends and family to take them in and drop them home, and providing this service closer to their homes could be transformative for them.”
With a 'modern and welcoming' environment, the new unit has been supported by Portsmouth Hospitals Charity. Items worth over £27,000, including reclining chairs, a blood fridge, and home comforts such as artwork, have been purchased to transform the unit.