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Today's global IT outage affected many organisations including ours but to put it into context, this outage affected less than a third of our patients.


Our staff worked tirelessly to deliver as many chemotherapy and immunotherapy treatments as possible and continue to finalise plans for those we were unable to see today due to issues affecting our supplier.


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The Christie celebrates 18 months as the UK’s only AQA-accredited hospital

News story posted 25 June 2024

The Christie NHS Foundation Trust, a specialist cancer centre in Manchester, is celebrating 18 months of being the only AQA-accredited hospital in the country.  

This accreditation is just one part of a pilot education and employment programme, which has been designed to support young people with cancer both during and after treatment.

The Christie is signed up to AQA’s unit award scheme, which offers learners the chance to learn new skills through completing one or more of 19,000 different modules. These cover everything from maths and leadership skills to CV writing and interview preparation. The unit award scheme is a flexible, accessible way for young people to have their achievements formally recognised by an official body.

79 people have done over 117 accreditations since the scheme started in November 2022.

In addition to the educational side of the programme, the team also focus on employability.

“Thanks to advances in cancer treatment, more and more people are living well with and beyond cancer, and our holistic services need to reflect that,” comments Steve Harcourt, youth support co-ordinator at The Christie’s teenage and young adult service.

“One of the big aims of our education and employment scheme is to help our young people with their lives after cancer, whether that be going to university, starting an apprenticeship or getting a job. This includes introducing them to employers and giving them the chance to spend time in the workplace. We are currently working with 26 employers across the North West.”

“The scheme has been a success so far. It’s just a pilot at the moment, but we’re hoping to make it permanent,” adds Hanna Simpson, lead nurse at the service.

“It’s amazing to see the difference this has made to our young people, adds Hanna. “Everyone is different, and our approach is tailored to the individual and their needs. We’ve had people go on to university, apprenticeships, and employment, but we also had one patient who left school early, and whose first-ever accreditation came through us. He brought his family along to the graduation ceremony and to see him grow in confidence in that way was just fantastic. We want to make sure they have the best quality of life possible, and our education and employment programme is just one example of that.”

A photo of a young female Christie patient drinking a cup of tea and speaking to a man, out of shot.

How the scheme has benefitted our young people

Sophie Claxton is studying for a BTEC in Forensic and Criminal Investigations

Sophie Claxton, who is 18 and from Burnley, had just started her first year of A-levels when she was diagnosed with leukaemia.

She was referred to The Christie for treatment, but her diagnosis meant that she needed to take a year off colleague to focus on her health.

Sophie was keen to keep on learning and decided to sign up for some of the AQA units. She was meant to do A-Levels in law, criminology, and sociology, so she did modules in forensics, science and anthropology, as well as a few others that interested her.

“I found the courses really helpful, comments Sophie. “In addition to keeping me learning, it also provided a small distraction, giving me something else to focus on and fill my time with. Not only this, but it also gave me something to look forward to knowing my work would be rewarded in the end. I also liked that not all of the courses were academic, some allowed you to learn life skills that you may not have thought about learning elsewhere.”

Sophie, who is still on maintenance treatment until May next year, started a BTEC National Diploma in Forensic and Criminal Investigations last September.

“The education programme at The Christie opened a new path for me and gave me more of an idea of what I truly wanted to study. In the end, I decided I was still interested in a career in criminology, and that the BTEC would be the best route for me as it covers more of what I’m interested in. I wouldn’t have known that without doing the courses at The Christie. I’m enjoying it so far and am looking forward to what the future holds.”

Josh Steels has his dream job as a graphic designer

Josh was 24 and in the final year of his degree when he was diagnosed with leukaemia. His treatment lasted for 3 years, and he had to suspend his studies, only returning when it finished in early 2022.

During his time at The Christie, his team supported him in taking AQA qualifications, which helped him prepare for his return to university. He also took part in other activities such as kayaking and hiking in the Lake District.

Once he graduated, he struggled to find work as a graphic designer. His youth support co-ordinator was able to put him in touch with some local businesses and he found a full-time job at an engineering company in Salford.

“The whole team at The Christie is amazing,” comments Josh. “Being treated in a specialist young adult unit made all the difference in terms of the support we were given. We were treated like people, not just patients. How they supported us with our education and employment is just one examples of that. I’ve now got a great job in my dream field, and I can’t thank them enough.”

Last updated: June 2024