The Skin Cancer unit at Whittington Health is an award winning, patient-centered service run by the dermatology department in outpatients. We see patients with suspected skin cancer (such as melanoma, squamous cell carcinoma and basal cell carcinoma) who are referred by their GP.
Most of these cases are seen in a One-Stop clinic which has been running successfully since 2013. This means that patients are seen by a Consultant Dermatologist and treated on the same day if necessary. All urgent cancer cases are discussed with a multidisciplinary team that consists of dermatologists, pathologists, oncologists and specialist nurses. Following this meeting the team makes a joint recommendation about the best individual and evidence-based treatment plan. This is then discussed with the patient so that they can make an informed decision about their care.
The main treatment that we offer for skin cancer is surgery under local anaesthetic (this means patients can go home immediately after their treatment) although we offer non-surgical treatments such as radiotherapy (done at UCLH), photodynamic therapy and topical treatments, depending on the type of skin cancer.
We have a team of 5 Consultant Dermatologists, 2 registrars, a senior house officer, a Clinical Nurse Specialist, dermatology trained nurses and health care assistants. We also have strong links with Royal Free and University College London hospitals for plastic surgery and oncology when needed. Our team can refer patients directly to clinical psychology services for additional support.
Our Clinical Nurse Specialist acts as a key worker for all skin cancer patients and liaises with the multidisciplinary team and Macmillan services to support, advise and guide patients during their treatment and follow up.