Patient and nurse in Day Oncology

Departments

Specific services

 

Clinical Haematology - Specific services

1. Inpatients

Haematology patients requiring inpatient care will be admitted to Ward 7 South of the Olivia Newton John Cancer Wellness and Research Centre (ONJCWRC). This includes patients who are undergoing intensive chemotherapy for leukaemia or aggressive lymphoma/myeloma and those undergoing an autologous or allogeneic stem cell transplant

2. Outpatient clinics

General haematology clinics are held in Specialist Clinics on Level 3, ONJ Centre. These run on Monday mornings, Tuesday afternoons and Friday mornings. A specific thrombosis and haemostasis (clotting and bleeding) clinic is held on Friday mornings and transplant and lymphoma clinics on Tuesday afternoon.

3. Outpatient treatment

Chemotherapy is given to patients in the Day Oncology Centre on Level 3, ONJ Centre. Other treatments such as blood transfusions or iron infusions are given at the Ambulatory Care Centre on Level 3, Austin Tower.

4. Clinical trials programme

We have multiple active trials across the spectrum of haematological malignancies.

To find out if there is a relevant trial to your circumstances, please visit: Cancer Council Victoria Trials to view all of the trials which are currently active at the Austin.

Once you have entered the site, type the word 'Haematology' into the search bar and a list of all of the different haematological malignancies will appear.

If you have any specific questions regarding these trials, please contact:

Jo Hawking - Haematology Clinical Trial Nurse Coordinator & Team Leader

Email: Joanne.Hawking@austin.org.au


Further information can be obtained by contacting the relevant nursing coordinator below:

Tania Cushion - Lymphoma & CLL Coordinator

P: 9496 9735

E: tania.cushion@austin.org.au

 

Vanessa Donati - Acute Leukaemia & Myelodysplasia Coordinator

P: 9496 9741

E: vanessa.donati@austin.org.au

 

Priscilla Gates - Autograft & Survivorship Coordinator

P: 9496 4617

E: priscilla.gates@austin.org.au

 

Lindsay Scudder - Myeloma Coordinator

P: 9496 9738

E: lindsay.scudder@austin.org.au

 

Peter Shuttleworth - Allograft Coordinator

P: 9496 5236

E: peter.shuttleworth@austin.org.au


5. Allogeneic Bone marrow transplant service:

This service was established in October 2015 and provides allografts from sibling or matched unrelated donors to suitable patients with acute and chronic leukaemia, lymphomas, aplastic anaemia, myeloma and myelodysplasia.

The participating consultants are Drs He, Grigg, Lim, Wong and Schwarer who working close in particular with the allograft and survivorship nurse co-ordinators.

6. Lymphoma service

This was established in late 2017 under the leadership of Dr Hawkes. Other members include Prof Grigg and Dr Chong who collaborate to drive the policy development and research programme for lymphoma. Each lymphoma patient is discussed at a multidisciplinary meeting (see below) and their care is allocated to a specific lymphoma consultant.

7. Other services

The appointment of tumour stream leads is designed to focus expertise in specific areas as haematology becomes more complicated and subspecialised. For example, patients with acute leukaemia are discussed with the acute leukaemia lead to ensure management is optimal and access to clinical trials is made available when relevant. A similar approach is used for myeloma (Dr Lim) and other areas (Prof Grigg for myeloproliferative disease and CLL, Dr Willcox for thrombosis etc.).

We have also established a survivorship clinic run by Priscilla Gates and Dr Hawkes in which patients who have completed their chemotherapy are reviewed to ensure that all the relevant issues which arise from their disease and its treatment are addressed.

8. Multi-disciplinary meetings

A lymphoma MDM is held each fortnight with participation by haematologists, a nuclear medicine physician, pathologist and relevant coordinators. Separate MDMs are also held to discuss myeloma, acute leukaemia and transplant patients.

9. Nursing co-ordinators

These co-ordinators play a vital role in ensuring the care of our patients is comprehensive. They spend time with patients and their families (education, logistics, psychological support, medication discussion etc. etc.) and each patient with a malignancy is given the contact details of the relevant co-ordinator to troubleshoot any issues which arise.

Communication

This is a crucial part of our service. The majority of patients seen in clinic have letters dictated on the day and sent out to the GP within 1-2 weeks. Discharge summaries are done promptly and sent to relevant doctors. Our policy is that major changes in a patient's condition are rung through to the GP as well as when patients are discharged after a complicated admission.