Bringing a human touch to cancer care | Chris O'Brien Lifehouse
 In Lifehouse News

As we enter the new decade, we are excited to share our achievements from the last two years in the 2018-19 Chris O’Brien Lifehouse Annual Review.

From our Chairman of the Board Doug Snedden and Chief Executive Officer Eileen Hannagan:

“This report covers a period that included two important milestones for our organisation: November 2018 marked five years since the facility opened to patients, and June 2019 was 10 years since Chris O’Brien AO died.

So, it is fitting that this period itself ushered in a new beginning – one in which we moved from consolidation to emergence as a constructive contributor to cancer care, benefiting the community.

We have become a hub of innovation and discovery, both through structured research and as a by-product of the complexity of the work done by our clinicians.

We are now one of the biggest cancer clinical trials centre in NSW. Our researchers have contributed to practice-changing research in several areas.

The hospital has reached full operating capacity. Volume and complexity increased in most services.

Data from Cancer Institute NSW showed our patients have better outcomes in crucial moments. These include higher survival and lower mortality rates after surgery for breast, ovarian and head and neck cancers.

We believe this is emerging evidence of the value of the comprehensive cancer centre model in Australia. Our integrated, holistic, patient-centred model of care is focussed on improving patient outcomes. But it is also about bringing a human touch to cancer care.

Our patient experience outcomes are very positive, with Cancer Institute data and Net Promoter Scores showing high rates of approval.

Unequivocally, all of these achievements are attributable to the professionalism and dedication of our people. Attracting and retaining an outstanding workforce is a consequential focus, as well as creating an environment where patient-centred care can flourish. We’re pleased to report that a survey examining culture showed staff engagement is high.

We cannot emphasise enough that Chris O’Brien Lifehouse is a collaborative and community based organisation. Our relationships with Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, the University of Sydney, Sydney Local Health District and NSW Ministry of Health are our pillars. The State and Federal Health Ministers have also been a tremendous support over the past year.

Besides our partnership organisations and staff, our thriving community is made up of collaborating colleagues (both in clinical work and research), invaluable and generous donors, volunteers, patients and families along with their representatives and advocates, and our local neighbourhoods. It truly is a ‘critical mass of people with a unity of purpose’.

We would like to extend a warm welcome to our new patron, Her Excellency the Honourable Margaret Beazley AO QC Governor of NSW, as she joins this community also.

There are more important milestones on the horizon. In the second half of 2019 we underwent an external accreditation process under new patient-focussed quality measures. The results will be reported in full in the next annual review but suffice to say that assessors deemed Chris O’Brien Lifehouse a leader in patient-centred care.

We put patients and families at the centre of everything we do. That is why this annual review is told primarily through their eyes and voices. We are grateful to them for allowing us to tell their stories.”

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