WILTSHIRE’S first mobile chemotherapy unit is making its initial visit to Westbury this week, allowing patients who previously had to travel to Salisbury to undergo treatment much closer to home.
The unit is expected to visit the White Horse Health Centre for one day every three weeks. Westbury is one of just three locations, alongside Shaftesbury in Dorset and Fordingbridge in Hampshire, that the unit is visiting.
Hope for Tomorrow is a national cancer charity whose mobile chemotherapy units bring vital chemotherapy treatment closer to patients, reducing long distance travel, waiting times, and avoiding the stress and strains of attending busy oncology centres. The charity owns and maintains the units, providing them for the NHS to operate.
Alison Herod, business relations manager at Salisbury District Hospital explained, “The whole concept is to provide care closer to home – if we can cut the travel of chemotherapy patients that’s a real benefit. There will still be times where patients come back to the hospital, but the general routine will cut down on travel.”
Each mobile chemotherapy unit costs Hope for Tomorrow £250,000 to build and maintain for three years and can give up to 3,000 chemotherapy treatments a year.