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Macmillan Cancer Unit in Medway Maritime Hospital, Gillingham awarded top marks for care to patients and families

A hospital cancer department has received a top award for its care to patients and their families.

The Macmillan Cancer Care Unit at Medway Maritime Hospital in Gillingham has been recognised for creating a welcoming and friendly space that meets people’s needs.

The Macmillan Quality Environment Mark working group
The Macmillan Quality Environment Mark working group

It was awarded the Macmillan Quality Environment Mark following an assessment of Galton Day Unit, inpatient services on Lawrence Ward, shared spaces, information resources and staff areas.

Since the last inspection in 2021, the unit had made several improvements, including the creation of a pharmacy area to improve patient concerns to medication side effects and reduce waiting times for take home prescriptions.

One patient said: “There is always a nice welcome – you are always offered a drink as soon as you arrive.

“Everyone makes sure you get a warm welcome and the volunteers have time to chat.”

Another said: “The staff are here for you every step of the way – they are a wonderful bunch.

“I plan to come back after I have recovered to give something to show my appreciation.

Medway Maritime Hospital in Windmill Road, Gillingham
Medway Maritime Hospital in Windmill Road, Gillingham

“You have a good laugh here, they speak to you and listen – they provide love and support.”

In the report, it scored five out of five and said said the unit “exceeded the level required to retain” top marks.

Macmillan nurse, Vicky Kidner said: “Retaining the quality mark is evidence of the hard work and commitment from every single member of the team to ensure our patients receive the very best care when they access the unit during what is already an extremely difficult and emotional time in their life.

“As well as providing chemotherapy treatment to patients in a calm and relaxing environment, we also offer practical, emotional, and financial support to people living with cancer. This is done through support groups, a welfare benefits clinic, a walking group, a wig-fitting service, and workshops on wellbeing and complementary therapies.

“We plan to continue building on this success to ensure the environment and our services always meet the needs of our patients and their loved ones.”

Jayne Black, chief executive of Medway NHS Foundation Trust, said: “I am extremely proud of the team for once again achieving the quality mark – well done to everyone involved.”

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