Healthcare professionals from across Swindon came together for a special event at the Great Western Hospital to promote the use of Holistic Needs Assessments to improve the care offered to local people with a cancer diagnosis.
Local doctors, nurses, and cancer support specialists from both the NHS and Macmillan Cancer Support, shared the benefits of Holistic Needs Assessments as a way of better understanding the personal needs of each individual patient. The group also heard from a local patient who spoke about the benefits of all services having a clear understanding of their personal care and support plan.
Michelle Taylor, Macmillan Personalised Care Team Lead, based at the Great Western Hospital, said: “We use Holistic Needs Assessments to support really important discussions with the patient about their physical, psychological, spiritual and social needs.
“It allows the patient to highlight the most important issues to them at that time, and this informs the development of a personalised care and support plan.
“The assessment is undertaken at different stages in the patient’s journey, particularly at diagnosis and following treatment, as their needs and priorities change.
“The information is shared with all staff involved in the patient’s care, from the GP surgery, to the hospital, to support staff in the community, so everyone has a clear understanding of the patient’s needs and care feels more joined-up.”
The NHS works closely with Macmillan Cancer Support to provide personalised care for people living with cancer. Additional assessments which take place throughout patients’ cancer journeys include End of Treatment Summaries, Primary Care Cancer Care Reviews and conversations about health and well-being information and support.
For information about how the NHS and Macmillan Cancer Support work together to provide personalised care and support, please visit www.macmillan.org.uk/healthcare-professionals/innovation-in-cancer-care/personalised-care
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