President of the Royal College of Physicians visits Velindre to discuss the future of cancer services



Velindre University NHS Trust was delighted to welcome Professor Andrew Goddard, President of the Royal College of Physicians (RCP) to the Velindre Cancer Centre (VCC) earlier this week.

The visit provided an opportunity to discuss a number of areas of mutual interest including the development of the medical workforce and the development of oncology expertise in the acute care setting across LHBs in Wales.

10% of patients in an acute hospital are admitted with a cancer-related emergency and in Wales we recently learnt that patients with cancer, particularly those in the last months of life, are attending A & E services on multiple occasions.

Velindre University NHS Trust Medical Director, Dr Jacinta Abraham said:

“We have made big strides in improving treatment outcomes and patient experience for cancer patients in Wales. At Velindre we put our patients at the centre of what we do and design our system of care around them. Through the Transforming Cancer Services programme in South East Wales, we will collaborate with our health board colleagues to deliver the right care at the right place at the right time for our patients. Given the increasing demand on our services for radiotherapy and systemic anti-cancer therapy, we have prioritised addressing the multidisciplinary oncology workforce needed to deliver the best possible care and this includes maintaining an exemplar training programme in oncology.”

Dr Hilary Williams, VCC Consultant in Medical Oncology said:

“It was a privilege to host the Royal College of Physicians’ visit to Cardiff this week and share information with colleagues about the ground breaking cancer treatment, research and care we deliver at Velindre. We want to enable patients to live as well as possible at home and their communities with a clear understanding of how and where to access support when necessary. Providing a specialist service for patients with unscheduled oncology needs through collaboration with health boards and the third sector, such as Macmillan Cancer, can help us achieve this. We need to better equip acute clinical teams across Wales to support cancer patients, understand why they are being admitted and how to prevent re-admission.”

The presentation for the Cardiff Fellowship Royal College of Radiologists Research, Improvement and Innovation Award also took place during the visit. The recipient of this year’s award was Dr Sam Cox for her work on enhanced oncology training.

Professor Andrew Goddard President of the Royal College of Physicians said:

“It was an honour to visit Velindre Cancer Centre (VCC) today in Cardiff, and meet with trainees from across Wales.

“This visit provided an important opportunity for physicians, specialist doctors, trainees, patients and VCC staff to come together and discuss a number of RCP priority areas, such as workforce, high quality medical education and integrated patient care.

“Physicians within health boards in Wales and at Velindre carry out crucial work and it was important to explore the different ways that we can work together to develop closer links between oncology and acute medicine across Wales.

“It is vital that we continue to work with charities, health boards and the third sector to help deliver a specialist service for patients with unscheduled oncology needs”.