We diagnose and treat patients with cancer. We work with a team of experts in radiology, pathology, surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy and symptom management.
We look after people with many types of cancer and related diseases, including:
Some of the treatments for cancer include surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy, as well as newer techniques such as interventional radiology and immunotherapy.
Nurses play an important role in caring for patients and bring extraordinary knowledge, experience, and expertise to your care. There are three oncology clinical nurse specialists (CNS) in the Mater Hospital, who work closely with our medical consultants. Their aim is to meet your needs and support your family from the time you are diagnosed and throughout your treatment.
You will meet your CNS at your first oncology outpatient appointment. At this meeting, you can discuss your diagnosis and treatment plan in detail, and get answers to any questions you have. You will also be given contact details for your CNS.
Your CNS co-ordinates and plans all the tests and appointments you need before your first treatment. As well as being a valuable source of knowledge and support, they also act as a communication link between patients and the rest of the oncology team.
St Vincent’s inpatient ward specialises in haematology and oncology. It is a 23-bed unit, and all patients are given a single bed room with an ensuite bathroom. Patients and their families can also use the ward’s family room.
You may be admitted to the ward for a number of reasons:
The staff of St Vincent’s inpatient ward aim to provide the highest standard of nursing care and a supportive, friendly and safe environment for patients, their relatives and visitors.
Last year, we looked after over 8,000 patients on our oncology day ward. The majority of our patients are able to return home on the same day as they get their treatment.
On your first visit, you will meet your day ward nurse, who will discuss your treatment plan and your medication with you. They will also tell you what to do if you experience any side effects from the treatment.
Chemotherapy is delivered to you in a number of ways – in tablets, by injections that go into your vein or by injections that go under your skin. Your treatment will be explained to you in detail by the oncology nurse specialist or a Daffodil Centre representative before your first treatment.
Depending on the type of chemotherapy you are getting, you may need to take new medications to prevent nausea, vomiting, rashes and other possible side effects of the chemotherapy.
It is important that your doctors, nurses and pharmacists know what medications (including herbal medicines) you are taking before you start your chemotherapy. Please bring a list of your current medications with you on your first day of treatment.
A nurse-led clinic for patients receiving oral chemotherapy was set up in July 2013 by the chemotherapy outreach team in the oncology/haematology unit. Clinics take place two to three times per week and patients attend on a regular basis for review. To ensure that they receive consistency in their care, they see the same two nurses at every appointment.
The Mater Hospital is a university teaching hospital and offers many training and educational opportunities for healthcare professionals. Some of our ongoing programmes are detailed below.
The Mater Hospital has been running a clinical professional development course in cancer nursing since 2009. It initially received category 1 approval from An Bord Altranais and subsequently received University College Dublin accreditation. This involves a level 8 reward and five UCD credits.
The course aims to help develop the knowledge and skills required for safe, competent practice in oncology/haematology nursing. It is available to staff working in the oncology/haematology unit in the Mater Hospital and is led by Paula Briscoe, CNM2. To date, 30 staff nurses have successfully completed the course.
Clinical trials can offer patients new treatments that are not currently widely available. The clinical trials research unit has been in existence at the Mater Hospital for over ten years. It was set up by Professor Mc Caffrey, the current medical director of the clinical trials research unit.
We coordinate a number of clinical trials in oncology and haematology. They are managed by our large and very experienced team, including clinical staff (oncology and haematology consultants, research nurses and pharmacists) and non-clinical staff (data management and administration).
See our Clinical Trials Research Unit page here for more information.
ARC is an independent charity that offers professional, personal support to people affected by cancer and those who care for them. The support is holistic and includes counselling, psychological support and complementary treatments. It is available to any person diagnosed with cancer, no matter where they live or where they are being treated. It is alsoopen to adult family members and friends of those affected by cancer, parents whose children have cancer and members of the caring professions who work with people with cancer.
65 Eccles Street, Dublin 7, D07 TD35
Tel: (01) 830 7333
557/559 South Circular Road, Dublin 8, D08 X229
Tel: (01) 707 8880
Centres are part of the Irish Cancer Society’s cancer support service. We provide information, advice and support to anyone affected by or worried about cancer and help them cope with the impact it is having on their lives.