The “inspiring” work of staff delivering cancer care was the topic of conversation today as local MPs visited the Royal Free London.

As one of the largest cancer providers in England, cancer care is a key pillar of the trust’s clinical strategy. Cancer visit v2.png

Chipping Barnet MP Theresa Villiers, Hampstead MP Tulip Siddiq and Enfield Southgate MP Bambos Charalambous visited the Royal Free Hospital to see some of the cutting-edge care that is being provided to thousands of cancer patients each year.

During the visit, led by the trust’s chief medical officer Gillian Smith, the MPs were shown the new positron emission tomography (PET) scanner, which is currently being installed at the Royal Free Hospital.

Head of nuclear medicine Daniel McCool explained that the new machine, which is funded by the Royal Free Charity, is the first of its kind in the UK and will enable his team to deliver faster scans, helping to speed up diagnoses and providing more research opportunities.

The MPs were also shown the radiotherapy department where consultant clinical oncologist Sarah Needleman talked about the latest developments in treatment, including how doctors can use a new type of radiotherapy to more precisely target tumours.

The group were shown the clinical research facility (CRF) where Nia Voase, lead research nurse, talked to them about how the lab enables the trust to carry out early-stage clinical trials. Start up funding for the CRF was provided by the Royal Free Charity.

The MPs finished by seeing the UCL Institute of Immunity and Transplantation (IIT) within the Pears Building. Director of the institute Professor Hans Stauss spoke to the MPs about new treatments being developed by research teams within the IIT.

Gillian Smith said: “I’d like to thank our local MPs for coming to see our extraordinary cancer services today. We were delighted to show them some of the ways in which we are delivering cutting-edge care to thousands of patients each year.

“As one of the largest providers of cancer care in England, our teams are working incredibly hard to ensure patients are diagnosed quickly and have access to the latest treatments. As the MPs said today, our staff do an amazing job in delivering care to patients and it was a real privilege to show MPs what they do.”