Image source: istock.com/Tatian
The James Paget University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust in Norfolk is piloting a prehabilitation programme for newly diagnosed cancer patients using a digital app.
It said that initially the service will be offered to people in the Great Yarmouth and Waveney area diagnosed with colorectal cancer and there are plans to extend it to other cancer patients.
Patients will be able to make use of the app to link with their clinical teams and monitor progress, and have access to specialist exercise classes in a local gym and other lifestyle and psychological support.
The app has been developed with Careology and the scheme developed in collaboration with patient representatives including the Together Against Cancer patient user group. It is funded by the East of England Cancer Alliance.
Careology will also provide a virtual ward capability and give patients access trusted information from Macmillan Cancer Support.
Rod Earp from Together Against Cancer said: “The programme aims to give patients maximum help in understanding their treatment options, how they will affect them and how they may best adapt so they can react to the new challenges their cancer treatments will bring.”
Nikki Dawkins, cancer prehabilitation nurse lead at the James Paget Trust, commented: “There is evidence that suggests that prehabilitation cancer programmes not only help patients improve their general fitness and mental health but also help them recover from surgery and treatment more quickly.
“Our clinical team is excited to see the positive effects this programme offers to patients. For us it was important to be able to offer a more personalised experience before people start their treatment.”