A NEW chemotherapy service for children is now available at the Horton General Hospital.

The clinic provides chemotherapy to young people between the ages of one and 19. Operating as a satellite site to Kamran’s Ward at Oxford Children’s Hospital, it means patients and their families in the north of the county can receive treatment much closer to home.

The Banbury clinic, which is currently focusing on treating acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, runs once a month and provides intravenous chemotherapy for patients who would otherwise need to travel to Oxford to receive their treatment.

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It is the result of work by paediatric staff across Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (OUH), and staff from the Brodey Centre – the specialist cancer care centre based at the Horton.

Dr Tania Davison, Speciality Doctor in Children’s Services, said: “This is a really great addition to children’s services at the Horton. We originally had staff who could provide supportive care such as medication reviews and blood tests, but having a designated clinic to administer chemotherapy at the hospital is a fantastic expansion.

"We’re so grateful to our paediatric and Brodey Centre colleagues for their drive, support, and help in moving this forward.

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“We’ve had great feedback from our families who are using the service – by being closer to home, it’s one less thing to worry about and makes receiving chemotherapy that little bit easier.

Professor Meghana Pandit, Chief Medical Officer at OUH, said: “We welcome anything that makes things easier for families when their children are undergoing treatment for cancer.

“The fact that families in the north of the county can receive treatment nearer home at the Horton is another example of how we’re committed to providing more services at the hospital, and expanding and investing in the care given there.”