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 and Delivery of High Quality Cancer Care in Essex"
NHS Essex Cancer Network

Meet The Teams

Each of the four acute hospitals in the ECRN has an oncology research team to support recruitment into NIHR portfolio research.

This Section contains details on each of these teams.

Basildon Hospital

The Research Nurses at Basildon form part of the busy Research and Development team, based in the Education Centre at Basildon Hospital. The department covers various types of clinical trials taking place across the Hospital, and has close collaborations with many departments such as Pharmacy, Radiology and in particular, Pathology and Biochemistry.

 Trina and Alice, pictured with the Basildon Research and Development Team
Trina and Alice, pictured with the Basildon Research and Development Team

The ECRN and CLRN part fund 2 Research nurses who form part of the R&D team; Trina Corbett and Alice Pilcher. Both cover trials taking place over multiple cancer sites. Trina came from a background in Cancer Research and chemotherapy, and has worked with the team at Basildon for several years. She has further developed Basildon’s Cancer portfolio across multiple sites, and been key in forging stronger links with Southend Hospitals own Research team.

Alice has worked extensively on haematological studies, vastly improving on what was once a poor portfolio. Alice has recently left the team to join the chemotherapy unit at Southend hospital, although she will still keep close ties to the R & D department.

Basildon Hospital is now a tertiary centre for the Essex Cardio thoracic centre, which has created an increase in the lung cancer portfolio. The hospital supplies a large population from inside the M25 circle, and as such selection to trials is always carefully considered with respect to travel distances.

Broomfield Hospital

Mid-Essex NHS Trust is proud to host the St Andrew’s Centre, one of the world’s best Burns and Plastic Surgery reconstruction institutions, providing a cutting edge environment to support pioneering research. It also supports The Helen Rollason Research Centre which enables more people to take part in clinical drug trials ensuring development of new medicines and treatments - with the support of a dedicated team of research nurses.  This centre is a collaboration between Mid Essex Hospital Services NHS Trust and The Helen Rollason Cancer Charity.

 The Helen Rollason Research Centre, at the Broomfield Hospital
The opening of the Helen Rollason Research Centre in November 2011.The centre offers care for patients taking part in oncology and other clinical trials, allowing patients access to dedicated trial nurses.

The R&D Department covers both oncology and non-oncology trials and studies.  The team is based in West Wing at Broomfield Hospital. The trial teams are known for their excellent research and are undertaking a number of oncology trials at present.  Recently, the team has expanded their portfolio to include rheumatology studies under the guidance of a new rheumatology consultant, Dr Malaviya

The ECRN fund two nurses and a pharmacy technician and everyone works cohesively as a team within the R&D department. The team consists of Tracey Camburn, Lead Research Nurse and Co- Director of R&D, plus five oncology research nurses.  Tracey Camburn has an MSc in Cancer Clinical research obtained from the Royal Marsden and has had many articles published on the role of the research nurse and side effect management issues.

Another member of the oncology team is Dawn Beaumont-Jewell, a research Nurse Clinician, who works in both Professor Tahir’s clinical team, as well as the Oncology Research Department.   Her role is to support recruitment to clinical trials and to take an independent lead in the clinical management of recruits.  As a highly trained specialist she aims to provide comprehensive service and support throughout the clinical trials treatment. Broomfield hospital boasts a high recruitment to oncology clinical trials, particularly in the tumour groups of Breast and Melanoma. The hospital has also had a successful MHRA audit for 2012. Recently the centre has been one of the first sites in the UK administering sub-cutaneous Herceptin to adjuvant Breast cancer patients

Colchester Hospital

Based within the Essex County Hospital, the Colchester oncology research team began when Dr Phillip Murray first became interested in oncology research. He started with one research nurse to oversee the research, gradually expanding the team as the number and complexity of trials increased. Originally self-funded, the CLRN later began to part fund the group as they grew.

The Colchester Cancer Research Team
The Colchester Cancer Research Team.

The current core team comprises of a manager, 2 Research Sisters, 4 Research nurses, a Research Radiographer, a Data Nurse and an Administrator. Lorna Dewar manages the team, using her experience working in radiotherapy and as the team’s previous Research Radiographer to meet the group’s needs. Consultant Oncologist Dr Bruce Sizer oversees the team and takes an active interest in the team’s work.

The Research Sisters, Jean and Liz, both come from oncology nursing backgrounds, working on colorectal and prostate, and haematology trials respectively.

The Research nurses, Andrea, Hayley, Louise and Rachael predominantly come from a background in Oncology. These skills come in useful as they cover the wide range of oncology trials taking place at Colchester Hospitals. Celine works as the teams research radiographer, and has utilised her previous work as a radiographer to promote Colchester’s radiotherapy research portfolio.

The team also has administrative support in the form of Lucy, the team’s Administrator, who works hard to meet the clerical requirements necessary for the oncology research team and Michelle, the Data Nurse, who assists with inputting the vast amounts of data collected from trial participants.

Since its beginning, the work performed by the team has seen new drugs becoming available to the Colchester oncology department, which would otherwise have been inaccessible to patients. The team has also overseen improvements in patient care and quality of treatment, expanded the skill sets of the department, and improved the quality of radiotherapy offered. Colchester was also the first in the country to recruit to the Ready trial, and was in the top 10 national recruiters to the Coin-B, Focus and Admire clinical trials.

Southend Hospital

The Southend Cancer research team deal with all cancer clinical trials, covering chemotherapy, radiotherapy and all phase trials (with the exception of Phase I trials). Situated within the Churchfield building at Southend Hospital, the site maintains a close link to Basildon Hospital.

The Southend Cancer Research Team
The Southend Cancer Research Team.

Sree Palvai is the team’s Clinical Trials Manager. A medical doctor by profession, Sree specialised in translational and clinical research, before taking on the task of managing the cancer portfolio at Southend. Anne McPherson, Eugene Mphansi, Sheila Reece, Juliah Jonasi and Lesley Nichols are all Research nurses for the team, coming from collective previous experiences in Radiotherapy and Surgical, Oncology and Post-operative wards. These experiences are invaluable as the Research nurses manage the various oncology trials offered by the portfolio.

Shriram is the team’s Clinical Trials Practitioner, who runs gynaecological as well as upper and lower gastrointestinal trials.

Lesley Googe is the groups Data Manager, maintaining important data and dealing with the long term follow up of patients as well as any data enquiries. Finally, the administrative needs of the team are met by the Clinical Trials Administrator, Heather Shires.

Southend are exceptionally high recruiters to Breast trials, and are currently maintaining good standards of recruitment and reaching targets in other oncology clinical trials.

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