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An introduction to the multidisciplinary team for breast cancer

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We would like to introduce you to the multi-disciplinary team for breast cancer at the Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust. This Trust incorporates the Park Centre for Breast Care, Royal Sussex County Hospital including the Sussex Cancer Centre, Princess Royal Hospital and Lewes Victoria Hospital. Some people undergoing surgery for breast cancer may also attend the Queen Victoria Hospital in East Grinstead although this is part of Queen Victoria NHS Foundation Trust


Who are the multi-disciplinary team for breast cancer?


The multi-disciplinary team consists of doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals who all have specialist training and experience in the diagnosis, care and treatment of breast cancer.

We have listed below some of the people that are in the team caring for you:

  • Consultant Surgeons: Mr C Zammit,  A Chouhan, Professor M Reed.
  • Associate Specialist Surgeons: Mr R Rathinaezhil, Mr S Shaheed
  • Clinical Fellows: Mrs F Ugolini,  Miss Maha Buhleigah.
  • Radiologists: Dr R Locke,   Dr S Hilmy,  Dr k Lekanidi,  Dr A Christou, Dr A Mytafidis,  Dr J Oshada.
  • Nurse Practitioners: Mrs Susan Heard, Mrs Suzy Halliday.
  • Clinical Oncologists:  Dr R Simcock,  Dr D Bloomfield.
  • Medical Oncologists:  Dr Berteli.
  • Speciality Registrar:  Dr R Sinha.
  • Histopathologists:  Dr M Vergine,  Dr M Taylor.
  • Clinical Nurse Specialists.  Breast Care Nurse Team Leader: Lisa Thomas-Brooks.
  • Clinical Nurse Specialists. Key Workers:  Debbie Elwell-Sutton, Caroline Foster,  Hester Noon,  Megan Wilkinson.
  • Secondary Nurse Specialist:  Michelle Miles.
  • Clinic Breast Care Nurse: Michele Hassan.
  • Breast Care Nurse screening: Suzi Schroter.
  • Breast Care Support Worker:  Liz Millen.
  • Superintendent Radiographer: Fiona Smith.
  • Patient Pathway Co-ordinator: Candice Stockley.

How does the multi-disciplinary team work?


We work closely together to plan and deliver the most effective treatment and care for you. We will consult with you and your family at each stage of your care.

If there is anything about your care or treatment that you do not understand please do not be afraid to ask. We are all here to help.

The Multidisciplinary Team meets at the Park Centre for Breast Care on a weekly basis to discuss individual patient treatment and care.


What hospital treatment and investigations will I have?


Investigations are usually initially carried out at the Park Centre for Breast Care or at the Princess Royal Hospital. Depending on the type of cancer you have, you may receive one or a combination of treatments. These can include surgery, radiotherapy (X-ray treatment), chemotherapy (drug treatment) or a treatment or procedure that may help with symptoms you may experience.

If you receive radiotherapy or chemotherapy, your treatment will usually take place at the Royal Sussex County Hospital. Surgery usually takes place at the Princess Royal Hospital. Some breast reconstructive surgery can take place at the Queen Victoria Hospital in East Grinstead. Your surgeon and your Clinical Nurse Specialist will discuss your individual situation with you.


What is the role of my Clinical Nurse Specialist (also called your Breast Care Nurse or key worker)?


Your Clinical Nurse Specialist is also called your Breast Care Nurse or ‘Key Worker’. They take a key role in coordinating your care with different members of the multi-disciplinary team and ensure you have the guidance and support you require. You will normally meet them at the time of your diagnosis.


Is there someone to talk to?


The diagnosis and subsequent treatment of breast cancer can have a major emotional effect on a person. There are some contacts listed below who you may find it helpful to talk to.

Your Clinical Nurse Specialist is here to provide support, advice and information about your particular type of cancer. You will be given the contact details for the telephone ‘helpline’ so that you or your family or carers can get in touch if you need further advice or support or if you have any further questions about your diagnosis or treatment.

There are also trained counsellors within the Macmillan Team based at the Sussex Cancer Centre who can provide you or your family or carers with more support if needed.


Will I have access to clinical trials?


There are research studies, or trials, which compare new or different treatments with existing ones. If you are asked to join a clinical trial, you are free to choose whether or not to take part in it. Your doctor or your Clinical Nurse Specialist may discuss this with you. You may also meet a Research Nurse who is based at the Park Centre for Breast Care who will provide you with the information you need to make that decision.


Will I have a record of my diagnosis?


There is an optional booklet called the Personal Record which you should receive once you have been informed of your diagnosis. This can be used to note down details about your cancer, contact details for the team looking after you and also as a diary if you find it helpful to keep track of how you are feeling. It can be helpful in sharing information between the hospital staff, your own GP, District Nurses and other healthcare professionals.

You may also be offered a CD recording of your conversation with your surgeon or oncologist which is yours to take home if you wish to do so.


Can we improve our service?


We value your views regarding your experience with our services and regularly aim to involve patients and their relatives or carers in reviewing the delivery of care. For this purpose you may be asked to participate in a ‘Patient Experience Survey’ at some point during or after your treatment. This is a survey which is sent to people with cancer across the country. We use the information from this to help us identify where patient experiences have been positive and also where further work or improvement is needed. Completion of such surveys is completely voluntary. From time to time we may also invite you to take part in other surveys around your treatment and care. Your responses are completely anonymous.


Useful contacts


Disclaimer: the information in this leaflet is for guidance purposes only and is in no way intended to replace professional clinical advice by a qualified practitioner.

Publication Date: February 2019

Review Date: October 2022

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