Staff, patients and volunteers at the Macmillan Information and Support Service at the Royal Free London Hospital are celebrating, after once again receiving a prestigious award that recognises high standards in cancer care.

The Macmillan Information and Support Service, based at the hospital’s Oncology Out-Patients Department has had their Macmillan Quality Environment Mark (MQEM) renewed, in recognition of the service’s on-going commitment to providing a high-quality environment for people affected by cancer. Assessed by an external panel to be “very good”; the centre was particularly commended for the “enthusiasm and passion” of its staff and volunteers, as well as providing an “excellent” user journey. 

The award was first launched in 2009 by Macmillan Cancer Support. It is the first in the UK that specifically assesses how well buildings such as chemotherapy units provide support and care to people affected by cancer.

Jane Lewis, Macmillan Information and Support Manager at the Royal Free, said: “Retaining the Macmillan Quality Environment Mark (MQEM) for a further three years is a significant achievement, which my wonderful team of 11 volunteers and I are hugely proud of. The work everyone at the service does is phenomenal and makes a huge difference to the experience of people affected by cancer in North Central London. The award recognises the consistency of quality of care within our Macmillan Information and Support Services Centre for anyone affected by cancer."

Yvonne Beadle, Macmillan Partnership Manager for North Central London, added her congratulations:  “The Macmillan Quality Environment Mark recognises excellent cancer environments. The Macmillan Information and Support Service at the Royal Free is a great example of a well-run centre providing a vital service to its many users. Our fantastic group of staff and volunteers have an enthusiasm and passion that clearly transfers to the care of the patient. The team should be very proud that they have continued to maintain such high standards.” 

The Macmillan Quality Environment Mark helps to ensure that people affected by cancer are treated and supported in physical environments of uniformly high quality. The scheme is open to any healthcare providers from the public, voluntary or private sectors that operate cancer care buildings. It has been developed in collaboration with people living with cancer and organisations including the Department of Health in England.

To receive the award, environments have to score highly in areas such as use of space, comfort and atmosphere, personal and social interaction and health and well being.  Consideration is given to such things as the greeting people receive when they come to a centre, the use of natural light and outdoor space, and the availability of quiet, private rooms – all areas that were highlighted as really important by people living with cancer who helped develop the award.

Organisations can apply to be assessed for the Macmillan Quality Environment Mark via

To find out more about the work of Macmillan Cancer Support visit or call 0808 808 00 00.