Therapeutic radiographers win national award for late effects programme

Published: 02 March 2016 Ezine

A team of therapeutic radiographers from Nottingham University Hospital Trust have won the long-term care category in the Quality in Care Oncology Awards.

The team’s service, a comprehensive radiotherapy late effects (RTLE) programme delivered by information and support radiographers,pipped entries from Trust’s around the country to win the prize.

Using a Macmillan grant over 3 years, the team set up the (RTLE) programme to be cost-efficient and lead by radiotherapy staff already knowledgeable about radiotherapy doses, treatment delivery and side-effects.

At the centre of the programme is an RTLE clinic, where patients can self-refer.

From there, they can either be given information about managing their RTLE or for those with more severe symptoms, the team has developed clear and open pathways accessing a range of specialist interest clinical teams and services within the Trust.

All these services already existed but were often difficult to access, simply not known about or just needing relationships built with the radiotherapy department. 

Another strand of the programme has involved building links with primary healthcare and other community cancer services to enable as many patients as possible to access the service.

All of this has been achieved by two radiographers working one day per week, and two hours a week from a clinical oncologist.

The competition judges said in their verdict: “The judges thought this work simply ticked all the boxes and showed good use of a multidisciplinary team to enhance quality of life.

“It provides holistic care by tapping into and utilising existing expertise, to meet a major unmet need.

“A leader in its intervention, this programme has simple aims that are expertly executed and the delivery is superb.”

Russell Hart, Radiotherapy Services Manager at Nottingham University Hospital Trust said: “The team were entered into this award as recognition of their fantastic work in this very important area of care for patients who have had radiotherapy.

“NUH are extremely proud of the team and direct impact they have made on the quality of lives for the patients.”