"Breast cancer treatment following routine..."

About: Royal Hallamshire Hospital

Following a routine mammogram I was recalled for further tests at the breast clinic at the Royal Hallamshire Hospital. Five days later I received the results of the tests. The lumpectomy and a sentinel lobe biopsy were carried out as an outpatient at the Theatre Admissions Unit followed by 15 week of radiotherapy at the Weston Park Hospital. It was only two weeks from diagnosis to surgery and so treatment could not have been started more promptly,

‘Thankyou’ is a simple word but it comes with heartfelt gratitude and appreciation for the skill and professionalism of the staff. I would like to thank the staff for their skill and kindness before, during and after treatment.

All demonstrated a total commitment to caring. No amount of money could have paid for a better standard of care.

At every step of the way I could not have asked for more and I am grateful for the courtesy, patience and kindness of the staff. Having an assigned breast nurse was particularly welcomed and they proved to be a source of sound practical advice and support.

Letters were received on time clearly indicating appointment times and instructions were clear. I found the DVD that was providing giving information about the radiography department at the Weston Park Hospital particularly helpful in alleviating fears of the unknown. I was provided with a great deal of written material which proved to be very informative and useful. It may be worth adding to your letter when inviting people for breast surgery as an outpatient that it is advisable to wear a shirt/blouse that buttons down the front as lifting the to get dressed can be painful after surgery!

For the vast majority of appointments I did not have to wait very long and, in some instances, I was seen earlier than the appointed time. The only exception to this was when I needed to see the consultant regarding the diagnosis, pre-surgery and post-surgery consultations. I felt so desperately sorry for them! The minimum waiting time that I had to see the consultant was an hour and the longest wait was nearly two hours. It seemed that the consultant had 10 minute appointment slots. When one is dealing with people who have been diagnosed with cancer it is somewhat unrealistic to think that this sort of news and the resulting questions can be completed within a 10 minute time frame. It is a credit to the consultant that, despite obviously having a tremendous work load, I never felt rushed. They made time to explain everything clearly and I was extremely grateful for their understanding and care at such a difficult time. The only other area that I had to wait for 55 minutes was the pharmacy department. I am really not sure why it was necessary for it to be dispensed at the hospital pharmacy and could not have been dispensed at my local pharmacy.

In conclusion, I want to thank every member of staff. I would definitely recommend this hospital.

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from Deborah Hopkinson, Patient Experience Co-ordinator, Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Thank you for your positive feedback and kind words about the staff that you have met whilst under our care. Your constructive suggestions together with your feedback will be passed on to the staff who are always pleased to recive such compliments and feedback where we can make further improvements.

Kind regards.

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