A YOUNG blood cancer patient has praised a Sheffield hospital service - which allowed him to stay surrounded by family and friends, and even take a celebration trip to London, during parts of his treatment.
John Hemingway, from Fulwood, Sheffield, lives with acute aplastic anaemia - a disease in which the bone marrow stops making enough red and white blood cells and platelets.
The condition weakens the 20-year-old’s immune system leaving him highly susceptible to infection.
He is now waiting for a bone marrow transplant and has been undergoing chemotherapy in the run-up to the procedure.
But in the six weeks before the treatment started John came down with an infection for which he needed intravenous antibiotics.
That often involves him being admitted to hospital as an in-patient - but thanks to Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust’s Outpatient and Home Parenteral Antibiotic Therapy service, John was able to spend time with his family, friends and girlfriend Zoe Hoynes ahead of his intensive treatment.
John, who is one of the 1,300 patients who benefit from the service, said: “I was even able to go on a special trip to London with Zoe for her 21st birthday. It was a lovely trip and I am so glad I didn’t miss out by being stuck in hospital with an infection.”
The service sees patients trained in hospital to administer their own drugs before they are allowed to return home. They then visit the hospital once a week for monitoring, and can also contact the team round-the-clock for help if needed.
Specialist nurse Dawn Andrews said: “We have received such excellent feedback from our patients with almost all of them saying the service improves their quality of life.
“Some people find being in hospital for long periods of time quite depressing but with our patients they actually enjoy coming in for their check-ups or a good old chat with the team!”