Who are we?
The Ipswich Hospital Cancer Services User Group (CSUG), are a small group of cancer patients, carers and health professionals based in Suffolk. We meet once a month in Ipswich Hospital, and members spread the workloads between themselves.
All our members have direct experience of living with cancer and its treatment. We are committed to the improvement of cancer services in Suffolk.
Our members are individually active, entrepreneurial and bring a wide range of skills and experience to the group.
What do we do?
- Consult with and listen to people whose lives have been affected by cancer.
- We work on behalf of patients and carers to improve services and keep up to date with cancer care developments.
- We ensure that the patients’ voice is heard.
- We collate and report on experiences of NHS cancer services in Suffolk.
- We represent patients and carers at other group meetings:
- Anglia Cancer Network Partnership group.
- Ipswich Hospital User Group.
- Cancer Services Development Group.
- Suffolk Cancer Locality Group.
- Patient Experience Group.
- Patient Information Steering Group.
- Cancer Information Centre Steering Group.
- Survivorship Steering Group.
- Caring for Carers Group.
- St Elizabeth Hospice Group.
- We lobby health care professionals.
- We speak up at committees and high level planning meetings.
- We bring the experiences of anyone affected by cancer to the attention of those who fund, commission, plan and manage services in the area.
Several members have been trained and do various voluntary work at the hospital i.e facilitators on Hope course, Peer Review, Flu pandemic standby, Assisting in the Cancer Information centre, meeting and greeting patients.
Annual open forum
Each year the Cancer Services User Group Hold an Annual Open Forum in the Woolverstone Cancer Centre. This is held in partnership between the CSUG and the professional staff at the centre. Patients and carers are invited to the forum. The forum starts with three presentations designed to help both patients and carers.
Following these presentations we form into six discussion groups, which give patients and carers an opportunity to share their experiences both good and bad. It also gives the centre staff feedback so they can adjust services where possible to improve the patient experience.
Patient experience questionnaires
In collaboration with professional staff we design and carry out questionnaires where patients answer a range of questions covering all stages from diagnosis to treatment over four-week period. These are analysed by the hospital, and when approved by the Trust board form a report which is used by the hospital to home services where possible to improve the patient experience.