As one of the top performing trusts in the country for speed of access to cancer treatment, and one of only a handful of trusts to have met national cancer standards for almost three years, the work of the Kent Oncology Centre, part of Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust, has been recognised this week by BBC South East News.
The Kent Oncology Centre is the fifth largest cancer centre in the country and provides specialist cancer services to around 1.8m people across Kent, Medway and East Sussex. The Centre is based at Maidstone Hospital and also provides services at Kent and Canterbury Hospital, alongside outpatient clinics across Kent and Medway.
Its team of 600 staff see more than 150,000 patients a year and continued all cancer treatments throughout the pandemic. Last year, the Kent Oncology Centre carried out around 35,000 chemotherapy treatments and more than 50,000 radiotherapy sessions.
Over a week in April, the Centre was the focus of a series of powerful daily reports by the regional flagship BBC South East Today news programme, looking at the impact a cancer diagnosis has on patients, their families and the staff who look after them.
As part of the series, the BBC met a number of patients receiving cancer care to talk about their experiences. They also spoke to colleagues about the treatments offered to cancer patients and how these continue to develop, and visited some services that patients may not see. These included Pathology, where clinical staff examine tissue from cancer patients, and the Centre’s specialist Oncology Pharmacy, dedicated to cancer patients.
To watch the reports, catch up on BBC iPlayer or you can watch the series on the Trust’s YouTube channel.