Unfortunately, cancer diagnosis for the young adult population has increased over the years. Here at The Alfred we identified a need to further support this unique patient group.
With an average length of stay at any one time for these admissions to be 35 days, a cancer diagnosis and a prolonged and intensive confinement to hospital can take an immense toll on a young adults life.
The team on 7East made a commitment to make a positive impact and improvement on not only patients physical outcomes but also their psychosocial ones, during and post treatment for the young adult cohort. This involves specifically trained staff, which have nursing and social work backgrounds and will roll out education tools to assist staff.
Thanks to a grant from the Dry July Foundation, we now an area specifically designed for the young adult patients and their families. By providing them with a dedicated space we hope to ease the anxiety experienced by our patients and improve their stay in hospital.
Social worker, Brigitte Mahoney, says, 'The tailor made space came from a realisation that the adolescent and young adult population (AYA) have unique and complex psychosocial needs and provide them with a comfortable environment, in an adult hospital. The planning of the room has taken years of consideration with numerous disciplines and professions contributing. The implementation of the AYA area is a first for The Alfred which I know will benefit our AYA population in the years to come.'