A NEW award that recognises high standards in the design of cancer care buildings has been awarded to the Beatson West of Scotland Cancer Centre in Glasgow.
The Macmillan Quality Environment Mark is the first of its kind in the UK and the Macmillan chemotherapy day ward at the Beatson is among the first sites to be given the award.
It is the first scheme that specifically assesses how well buildings such as chemotherapy units provide support and care to people affected by cancer.
The award has been developed in collaboration with people living with cancer and organisations including the Department of Health in England
Cathy Hutchison, cancer consultant nurse, and Carol Stevenson, a chemotherapy team leader, travelled to London to receive the award at a prestigious ceremony yesterday (14 January).
They received their award from Professor Mike Richards, national cancer director at the Department of Health, and Macmillan Cancer Support chief executive, Ciaran Devane.
Dr David Dunlop, medical director of the Beatson West of Scotland Cancer Centre said: “We are delighted to have been given this prestigious award. It reflects the hard work and dedication of the team that designed the centre and all the staff and volunteers who work to make the centre a welcoming and supportive environment for patients and their families.”
The Macmillan Quality Environment Mark will help to ensure that people affected by cancer are treated and supported in physical environments of uniformly high quality. The scheme is open to any healthcare providers from the public, voluntary or private sectors that operate cancer care buildings.
Nicola Cook, National Project Manager at Macmillan Cancer Support, explained how the cancer environments are assessed.
She said: “To receive the award environments have to score highly in areas such as use of space, comfort and atmosphere, personal and social interaction and health and well being.
“Consideration is given to such things as the greeting people receive when they come to a centre, the use of natural light and outdoor space and the availability of quiet, private rooms – all areas that were highlighted as really important by people living with cancer who helped develop the award. “
Organisations can apply to be assessed for the Macmillan Quality Environment Mark via www.macmillan.org.uk/cancerenvironments.
For further information contact: Linda Summerhayes or Michelle Gallacher at Macmillan Cancer Support on 0131 260 3720, and NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde Communications on 0141 201 4429.
Pictured left to right are: Professor Mike Richards, national cancer director at the Department of Health, Cathy Hutchison, cancer consultant nurse and Macmillan Cancer Support chief executive, Ciaran Devane.
· About Macmillan Cancer Support: Macmillan Cancer Support improves the lives of people affected by cancer, providing practical, medical, emotional and financial support. Working alongside people affected by cancer, Macmillan works to improve cancer care. One in three of us will get cancer. 2 million of us are living with it. If you are affected by cancer Macmillan can help.
· The assessments of cancer buildings will be undertaken by an external partner utilising the agreed MQEM framework.
· The five standards that each environment will be judged on are as follows:
1. Journey will be measured to and from the cancer environment from accessibility on public transport to parking facilities and the greeting received at the door
2. Space and use of space will look at accessibility, reception and waiting areas, shared treatment areas, whether the space in free of clutter, where the quiet rooms and consulting rooms are located.
3. Comfort and atmosphere will look at how the settings are designed, whether there is a homely feel to the environment, are the seating areas comfortable and is there a garden. The natural light and decoration of rooms will also be evaluated.
4. Health and wellbeing will look at food and drink facilities, outdoor space, if the consulting rooms are big enough to bring a partner for support and can the lights be dimmed
5. Personal and social interaction will include whether the staff take time to listen and understand patient’s perceptions and privacy in consultation rooms.