First ever Macmillan Quality Environment Mark for Macmillan Support Centre, Altnagelvin Hospital


First ever Macmillan Quality Environment Mark for Macmillan Support Centre, Altnagelvin HospitalThe Western Trust is celebrating being awarded the Macmillan Quality Environment Mark (MQEM) in recognition of the excellent standards of environment for people affected by cancer at the Macmillan Support Centre at Altnagelvin Hospital, Londonderry. 
The assessment which was carried out independently on behalf of Macmillan Cancer Support on Thursday 22nd November 2018 by Karen Lewis, Global Lead, Healthcare UK, DNV GL International Accreditation Standard (DIAS) and Amanda Nash, volunteer user assessor, assessed four keys areas of design and use of space, user’s journey, the service experience and the user’s voice.
The MQEM award, given by Macmillan Cancer Support, is the first in the UK that specifically assesses how well buildings such as information centres and chemotherapy units provide support and care to people affected by cancer, whilst also recognising high standards in building design.
Excitingly, the Macmillan Support Centre achieved the highest possible overall score of five in all key areas with the assessors rating the facility as ‘Excellent’. The award is the first assessment the centre has undertaken since it opened in October 2017.

Fiona Beattie, Assistant Director of Cancer Services and Diagnostics, at the Western Trust said; “We are delighted to have achieved top marks in this assessment in recognition of the design and use of the Macmillan Support Centre here at Altnagelvin.  The team of staff and volunteers have worked very hard to ensure that patients and their families are welcomed to a warm, non-clinical environment where they can be supported and their holistic needs can be met.”

People living with cancer, their families and carers can visit the Macmillan Support Centre which is run by the Western Trust, to browse the range of information booklets, ask the team for advice, locate local services and access welfare advice. They can also avail of psychology, a range of complementary therapies as well as Look Good Feel Better makeovers, wig and prosthesis services and counselling; some of which are delivered in partnership with local charities; Action Cancer and Cancer Focus NI.
Facilities in the centre include a relaxing lounge area and designated rooms for complementary therapy, wig consultation and quiet rooms.
The Macmillan Support Centre has exceeded expectations in the first year with in excess of 5,000 users having attended the centre to avail of a range of services since it opened in October 2017.

To receive the award, centres have to score highly in areas such as use of space, comfort and atmosphere, personal and social interaction and health and wellbeing.

Consideration is given to patient feedback and how they are greeted/ welcomed 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.

The Macmillan Support Centre is located at the first turn off to the left as you come on to the Altnagelvin Hospital site from the Glenshane Road.  It is open Monday –Thursday 9:00 – 17:00 and Friday 08:30 – 16:30.
For more information please contact the Macmillan Cancer Support Team on (028) 7161 1272, email