Macmillan advanced specialist nurse in oncology Lesley Taylor was awarded a prestigious Macmillan Excellence Award in Service Development at the National Macmillan Professionals Conference and Annual Award Ceremony.
Lesley was nominated as a result of her work to improve oncology follow-up care which was co-designed with patients, carers and oncology consultants. The redesigned service allows patients to access their follow-up care in the more accessible and relaxed environment of The Crescent in Dundee rather than having to come to hospital.
The awards ceremony was hosted by journalist and television personality Victoria Derbyshire who was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015.
Speaking about her award, Lesley said, “I am absolutely delighted to have received this award for service improvement. The award is especially appreciated because the process involved gaining the views and experiences of patients diagnosed with cancer and working with colleagues in the multidisciplinary team and volunteers to change the way we deliver follow-up care for patients having oncology treatment in Tayside.
“We couldn’t continue to follow up patients in the way we were. The numbers were increasing and we weren’t meeting their needs. We needed to ask different questions about the issues they were facing and explore areas that we hadn’t done before.
“Quite early on I started to get an inkling that we were really making a difference. Patients were getting better sooner, and we were discharging them from our clinic quicker. We believe this is down to the increased support they get at a strategic point in their treatment.
“Seeing patients picking up the pieces of the life they’d had to put on hold while they were going through treatment is great. Knowing that the service can support someone who is having a desperate time and signpost them to help gives us a sense that we’re doing the right thing.”
“I hope that this award will allow us to roll out this service to more patients in different localities in Tayside whilst ensuring we maintain safe and effective follow-up that support patients in their recovery.”