On Friday 21st October, members of the hospital’s breast care team joined patients and special guest, journalist and broadcaster Victoria Derbyshire, at Ashford Hospital, to launch a new and innovative mobile app for breast care patients.
The app was developed following a project earlier this year, which saw the breast care team working closely with patients to assess the service – identifying what worked well and what could be improved. Breast Consultant, Mr Manish Kothari, said: “Our ‘experienced based co-design project’ was really enlightening and one of the things many patients talked about was information; some saying they felt ‘bombarded’ by it. In this digital age, everything is at our fingertips and the internet is flooded with information about breast cancer, but it can be difficult to navigate your way through and know which sites to trust. We wanted to create something that pulled all the essential information together, was specific to patients at Ashford and St. Peter’s and could be easily accessed.”
And so the app was created, led by Programme Office Manager Mark Hinchcliffe, who said: “This was the first time we’ve created an app dedicated to a clinical service and we are really pleased with the result. Patients can go on and meet the members of the team caring for them, find out what to expect at their first appointment, how and when they will receive their results or read about the different treatments available. Feedback from everyone at the launch event was really positive and we received some great suggestions on how we can further develop the app and make it even more useful for patients.”
Reflecting on the benefits offered by the app, Victoria Derbyshire – who was a breast cancer patient herself last year – said: “What’s really clear when you look at the information is that you can trust it. It’s available at the tip of your fingertips whenever you need it – whether that’s the middle of the day or the middle of the night. I’d like to offer my congratulations to all of the team for having the initiative, wherewithal and dynamism to develop something like this. This is clearly just the start and marks a new and modern way of providing much needed information to patients – I look forward to seeing how the app develops even further over time.”
Anyone interested in the app should search for ‘Ashford and St. Peter’s breast care’ in the App Store.