A new mobile health unit, which provides cancer care to patients in their local community, has been set up in Woking to help support the NHS.

The unit – at Morrisons in Goldsworth Road – is in collaboration with Royal Surrey NHS Foundation Trust.

Run by LloydsPharmacy Clinical Homecare (LPCH) and EMS Healthcare, it is designed to deliver “flexible and convenient care” to more patients outside a hospital setting. 

As well as Woking, a unit is also being set up in Horsham.

It will operate for three days each week, and can provide treatment for up to 60 people in that period. 

LPCH says it will be staffed by “experienced oncology professionals” and will deliver cancer treatment such as subcutaneous injections and intravenous infusions, at a convenient location for patients, to fit around their daily schedule.

“By putting the care directly into the communities where people live, and with accessible and free parking, the mobile unit helps take away the stress of journeys to the hospital as well as the significant travel time associated with that journey,” said the company.

Emma Masters, lead nurse for systematic anti-cancer therapy (SACT) at the Royal Surrey, said: “It’s exactly the same treatment they would have, just much closer to home.

“We recognise patients are on treatment for many years, often requiring multiple attendances to hospital, so it’s really important to us we can ease some of the burden of receiving their cancer treatment.”

Nick Davis, the chief executive  of LloydsPharmacy Clinical Homecare, said: “We’re proud to be able to support the NHS, and deliver for patients, via mobile health units like this one. 

“Like many people, I felt tremendous pride as we celebrated the 75th anniversary of the NHS. Being able to support the service by freeing up hospital capacity, and giving patients their time and daily lives back, is an immense privilege and a testament to the tireless work being carried out by everyone at the unit.”

Patient Judy Kennedy said: “Compared to being in hospital, it’s just so different. It just feels mentally so much lighter. I don’t need to psych myself up to go to hospital or to try to find a parking space. 

“I’ve got Stage 4 incurable cancer. Time is everything. 

“Having a day back every three weeks is amazing – it’s what money can’t buy.”

Another patient, Valerie Cottington, added: “There’s no waiting, it takes five minutes and then I’m off. It’s changed my life because I’ve sort of got my freedom back.”

And Jillian Edmonds, who has used the service, said: “For me, this takes a lot of the pressure off, so I haven’t got the worry of parking, the staff are brilliant. I can’t say any more but this unit is desperately needed. Everywhere.”