Kent & Medway Prehab aims to get patients to their optimal health before treatment, helping them cope with the challenges of their treatment as well as to recover faster
Kent and Medway Prehab is a multi-dimensional programme designed to help all patients in Kent and Medway who are newly diagnosed with cancer, before, during and after cancer treatment (chemotherapy, radiotherapy, immunotherapy and surgery). The programme aims to empower and guide patients, actively supervising them to engage in exercise, nutritional screening and education and to have improved mental well-being. Support is offered as well for smoking cessation, alcohol moderation, and referring into post-treatment exercise programmes where indicated.
You will be assessed by an experienced cancer rehab trained Exercise Physiologist. The intervention will be delivered either virtually (video/phone calls) or face to face, locally to where you live, and will be personalised to your level of ability, baseline fitness, expectations and beliefs. You will be offered at least one session with a trained specialist therapist to help manage anxiety and develop coping strategies to face diagnosis and treatment.
The programme should help you recover faster, return to enjoying the activities you did much earlier – many have reported higher levels of fitness than before joining the programme – and help you tackle side effects such as fatigue and low mood derived from treatment.
In the same way that rehabilitation helps people recover following an illness or injury, Kent & Medway Prehab will assist you in helping patients build their strength and fitness before treatment.
This means patient recovery time is often shorter, and they are able to return to the quality of life they enjoyed before their treatment sooner.
100% of the attendees find our model inclusive, relevant and accessible.
Kent & Medway Prehab is lucky enough to have such a depth of expertise in their team, with members specialising in triage, referral, psychological support and exercise delivery.
In developing the service we were not only drawing on the expertise of our multi disciplined team, our solutions pivoted and revolved around an essential team of doctors, specialist cancer nurses, psychologists, counsellors, physiologists, students and most importantly, the patients themselves.
Doctors were involved with designing a prehabilitation pathway for eligible patients and recruiting them to the prehab service. This is a clinically lead programme, guided by the direction provided by our patient steering committee.
As a planned expansion of Kent & Medway Prehab, in January 2020 we opened satellite centres into the communities of Strood, Lordswood and Rainham. Following the global pandemic (COVID-19), we adapted our offer to telemedicine intervention. This allowed us to withstand the challenges posed by limitation to our face-to-face offering.
Our telemedicine offering has received the most encouraging feedback from patients and allowed us to remove geographical barriers and provide cancer prehabilitation service to all Kent.
Our service works closely with rehabilitation and exercise referral pathways to help patients complete the cycle of prehab-to-rehab.
Our mission is to support patients at their most vulnerable time to help them develop physical and psychological resilience to take on the challenges of cancer treatment and life beyond.
The Sports Minister, Tracey Crouch, has been a strong supporter of Kent & Medway Prehab since its inception. She has visited our team’s pilot site, met the patients who have used the service and encouraged the team to develop their vision to provide an integrated, personalised and effective service for all of our local community.