HSMA hospital partners with NHS to keep cancer services running

NEWS - 21ST APRIL 2021

A collaboration between the NHS and The London Clinic has allowed NHS cancer patients to continue receiving vital care throughout the COVID-19 pandemic

Since the onset of the pandemic in the early months of 2020, the NHS has been under immense pressure to meet the demands of an influx of COVID-19 patients who urgently require specialist, hospital-based care. To help relieve some of this pressure, a partnership was established in March 2020 between the NHS and the independent sector, designed to ensure that cancer patients could still access the services and treatments they needed, while creating much-needed extra capacity for the NHS. One of the independent hospitals involved in this ground-breaking collaboration is The London Clinic, located in the Harley Street Medical Area.

A year on, the approach has been deemed hugely successful. The NHS has praised The London Clinic for its ongoing role in providing vital cancer services for patients, in particular across the North East London region (Barking and Dagenham, City and Hackney, Havering, Newham, Redbridge, Tower Hamlets and Waltham Forest).

Throughout the pandemic, the hospital has provided a variety of cancer services and treatments for NHS patients, including robotic prostatectomies, using the new da Vinci Xi robot, and urgent surgeries in adrenal, hepato-pancreato-biliary, colorectal and gynaecological cancer. This is in addition to live renal transplants, bone marrow stem cell transplants, radio iodine nuclear medicine, vascular surgery, and endoscopies.

Leonie Lonton, an NHS patient receiving treatment at The London Clinic, said: “It wasn’t a good time to find out during COVID-19 that something was wrong. What I wanted was treatment and I’m delighted to say that I have been able to receive this at The London Clinic, with really fantastic people looking after me. Teams from the NHS and The London Clinic are working so collaboratively – it’s very reassuring and the care is second to none.”

NHS cancer patient Leonie Lonton at The London Clinic

NHS cancer patient Leonie Lonton at The London Clinic

Cancer care in a safe environment
Despite the challenges of the pandemic, NHS North East London and The London Clinic are working to ensure people have ongoing access to cancer care in a safe environment. Many patients may have been hesitant to seek medical help due to the risk of exposure to COVID-19 and concern about putting pressure on the NHS. However, it is imperative that people come forward to receive medical help.

Satya Bhattacharya, medical director at The London Clinic, said: “One of the biggest consequences of the pandemic, with the entire health service under immense pressure, is the impact on NHS waiting lists. The London Clinic is pleased to be able to alleviate some of that pressure by supporting our colleagues at hospitals including the Royal London to carry out a broad spectrum of complex treatments, such as for gynaecological cancers. We have put our facilities, including our custom-built cancer wing and intensive care unit, at the disposal of the NHS, and will continue to find ways to help them where we can.”

To further reassure patients about coming forward to receive medical help, the NHS and The London Clinic have collaborated to produce a new film, which can be viewed here: