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Implementing the Lymphoedema Prevention Pathway

Physiquipe were very excited to present “Implementing the Lymphoedema Prevention Pathway” with Ali Batchelor and Louise Koelmeyer.

We had an incredible response for registrations with over 150 registrants from the UK and Ireland on the Impedimed “Health is Fluid” webinar series. Following this amazing engagement and attendance, we had to bring a UK specific webinar to you. The UK and Ireland are becoming more interested in this pathway, so in this session we looked at how it can be implemented in a real-life clinic, specific to the UK.

We were joined by Louise Koelmeyer, one of the early adopters and pioneers of this pathway. Louise is a principal researcher for the International, multi-centre PREVENT Trial at Macquarie University. Louise shared her experience of adopting this pathway from the very beginning and how this has influenced her practice and the results she has had and how this pathway is steadily being adopted all over the world.

We were also joined by Ali Batchelor, the Lead Lymphoedema Nurse Specialist at the Yeovil and Taunton NHS Trust. Ali established her Lymphoedema surveillance/prevention service around 9 years ago now when she heard a presentation from Louise at a BLS Conference. Since then, this service is now fully commissioned and is provided across 2 hospital sites (Yeovil Hospital and Musgrave Park Hospital).

At this point, we must acknowledge the amazing work that the breast care teams at these respective hospitals do to support the surveillance pathway.

During this webinar, we discussed:

  • The importance of the patient’s voice
  • Who to approach when starting this project
  • The hurdles and challenges you will face
  • What the outcomes are and how beneficial this is clinically and financially

A really thought-provoking question was “is the UK behind when implementing this pathway?”

Louise answered:

The scientific literature is coming out of the USA so there is a big push there, also Australia is likely to be ahead of the world when it comes to the Bioimpedence technology and this pathway, as it is an Australian device/company. Worldwide, we know Vaughan Keeley is doing some work around this area. Women diagnosed with breast are big advocates of this model of care, their voice is important. With the publications of some big studies, we could see some big changes in the next 5 years, the question then becomes – how do we implement this!

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We then asked Ali, “From an NHS perspective, there is a lot of red tape and hoops to jump through, would you like to see this offered more in the private sector as well?”

Absolutely, I would like to see this everywhere! Speaking locally from our local private hospital, we are missing patients who have had their surgery privately. It is improving now as one of their surgeons (who originally wasn’t a huge advocate for the pathway) now refers his patients for monitoring from his private surgery – so we must be doing something right!

Very passionately, it must be said, Ali added;

Everywhere should be doing it. The outcomes are so important for our patients and it has changed the types of patients we see now and it should be one of our priorities!

And on that note, if you work in Cancer services, are a Clinical Director, Cancer Commissioner, Lymphoedema Specialist or know someone that you feel would like to see this, or needs to be exposed to this…

Watch the full webinar below

Q&A

  • 43:5245:38 – Karen cooper question: thoughts on fluoroscopy pre-surgery
  • 45:4749:52 – Prevention Question
  • 49:5351:42 – Commissioned service and financial aspect
  • 51:4355:37 – Perometer vs. bioimpedence?
  • 56:0058:47 – Worldwide pathways – where does the UK sit – are behind?
  • 58:481:00:38 – Would Ali like to see more private provision?
  • 1:00:391:04:07 – Model of care can it be changed to fit the service? Persistent and patient to Ali
  • 1:04:081:06:16 – Final nuggets of each speaker
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