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Saturday, 04 July 2015

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Barrow hospital campaigners bid to save Oncology unit

CAMPAIGNERS who fought for a dedicated oncology unit in Barrow have expressed dismay at major changes being proposed at the inpatient unit.

On Tuesday, the University of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust (UHMBT) confirmed a consultation had been launched over the relocation of oncology and haematology inpatient care at Furness General Hospital.

Although UHMBT has stressed the quality of care will not be affected, fundraisers who fought for the opening of the unit have expressed their fears over how any move would affect the treatment of patients.

A Facebook group called FGH Cancer Care Campaign was set up just hours after the announcement.

Maureen Cole, whose son David lost his battle with cancer aged 24 in July 2003, has said she cannot understand why the trust is looking to relocate services.

The David Cole Training Fund was set up in his name to fund the training of nurses in oncology and haematology – and work on the unit started only months after his death.

She said: “In the past, people were expected to have different treatment in different wards.

“It is never just as simple as people having chemotherapy as their treatment for cancer; there are so many other stages.”

Jeanette Henry has donated more than £2,000 to the unit after being diagnosed with acute myeloid leukaemia in 2000, and received treatment at FGH.

Mrs Henry said: “It is a peaceful haven with truly dedicated, highly experienced, highly qualified staff, who look after all in their care with gold-standard, wonderful skill and professionalism.

“Sited away from the main hospital, away from the hustle and bustle and away from all the inevitable bacteria and viruses, it’s like being nursed in Westminster Abbey as opposed to Piccadilly Circus.”

Wendy Egerton, whose daughter Jade is receiving treatment on the unit, said: “They’re like our family – we’re always there. We love the girls who work there. “

UHMBT stressed other positions at FGH will be made available to the oncology nurses through its redeployment policy, but in the situation where more than one nurse applies for a particular vacancy, a selection process will follow.

George Nasmyth, medical director, said: “We will do everything we can to ensure affected staff find suitable alternative employment within the trust as quickly as possible. It is our aim, as part of reducing our reliance on bank and agency staff, to fill the vacancies currently occupied by temporary staff, with appropriately qualified, permanent staff.

“We understand that this is undoubtedly a difficult time for those staff involved and we will continue to support them throughout the process.”

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see my Charles and Middleton comment wasn't to your liking. That's why I never purchase your paper, it's ok when your stories offend or upset people.

Posted by Philm on 17 March 2013 at 09:50

Hang on a minute. The original statement from the trust stated that patients would be treated iin a special seperate area on a medical ward by specially trained trained staff. So why are the nurses being redeployed. This is clearly more than just a movement of services within the hospital.

Perhaps the NWEMAIL can enquiry what amount of the £30 million in savings is expected from FGH compared to RLI and Kendal I assume it is being shared fairly.. What services are being shed or cut at RLI?

FGH would be better out of the Morecombe Bay Trust and should form a Cumbria Trust with the other hospitals.

Posted by Travs on 15 March 2013 at 13:47

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