Ipswich: They’re saving our skin - Ipswich Hospital’s cancer team among top in UK

SKIN cancer care at Ipswich Hospital is among the best in the country, it was revealed today.

The most recent review of services across the country has ranked the Heath Road trust joint fourth.

Dermatology consultant Khalid Mahmood, the hospital’s lead clinician for skin cancer, said: “This is fantastic news for patients.

“To say the service here is among the very best in the country is a great result for the team’s hard work.”

The results, published following a peer review, look at all areas of patient care including waiting times, clinical guidelines, psychological support and patient satisfaction results.

Staff education, team working and contributions to clinical trials were also taken into consideration.

Ipswich Hospital’s overall score is 97 per cent, a giant leap from 2009 when the trust scored just 32pc.

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Dr Mahmood said: “Since then we have appointed a Macmillan skin cancer nurse specialist Rachel Alexander who makes a huge difference as a key worker to patients.

“We have also been joined by consultant plastic surgeon Allan Bardsley who sees patients who need a plastic surgery opinion.

“We have great team work now and hope that next year we can get 100pc.”

Ms Alexander added: “The skin cancer multidisciplinary team aims to provide a clear care pathway from the time a person with a suspected high risk skin cancer in the community is referred into our care.

“Once referred, the patient can expect high standards of care. One area where we wish to excel in the coming year is to ensure we provide patients with information at a pace which is suitable to the individual.”

Those who assessed hospitals for the review, said of Ipswich: “The panel was very impressed by the well organised, well led multidisciplinary team. The team should be commended for its continued delivery of a high quality integrated service”.

Last year the hospital cared for 336 patients newly diagnosed with serious skin cancer.

n Have you been treated for skin cancer at the hospital? Write to health reporter Lizzie Parry with your stories. Write to Ipswich Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail lizzie.parry@archant.co.uk