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Cancer services

The Macmillan Unit is a purpose built unit providing inpatient and outpatient support and facilities for patients with common cancers and some less common tumours. 

Services provided

The cancers treated at West Suffolk Hospital include:

  • Breast cancer
  • Lung cancer
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Prostate cancer

Treatments provided include:

  • Radiotherapy – this is the use of high energy x-rays to destroy cancer cells, but cause as little harm as possible to normal cells.  Radiotherapy is normally performed at Addenbrooke’s Hospital, but organised and supervised by the West Suffolk team. It can be carried out at Ipswich Hospital or The Norfolk and Norwich Hospital if the patient prefers.
  • Chemotherapy – this is the use of anti-cancer (cytotoxic) drugs to destroy cancer cells. Some are given as tablets or capsules but most are given by drip (infusion) into the vein.
  • Hormones – these work by altering the levels of particular hormones in the body.
  • Biological therapies – these use substances that occur naturally in the body to destroy cancer cells.
  • Symptom relief.

The department is committed to research and offers many patients the opportunity to participate in national and multinational clinical trials.

The oncology department does not provide a diagnostic service for solid tumours. Patients with suspected cancer should be seen by the appropriate medical or surgical specialty for diagnosis and initial investigations. The consultants are present at the multidisciplinary meetings held within West Suffolk Hospital (and also those which are video-linked across the area in the case of rarer cancers), enabling early involvement where it is appropriate for patient care.

Contact the team

Macmillan day treatment unit: 01284 713040

Macmillan inpatient unit: 01284 713234

Macmillan outpatients reception: 01284 713267

24 hour emergency service for acute cancer patients: 07495 440616

Dr Margaret Moody, consultant clinical oncologist 

Dr Cathryn Woodward, consultant clinical oncologist 

Dr Alexander Martin, consultant clinical oncologist 

Dr Dan Patterson, consultant medical oncologist

Helen Small, Macmillan oncology clinical nurse specialist 

Mrs Francesca Davidson, Macmillan unit manager


The Macmillan Unit is situated on the ground floor, at the rear of the hospital. There is allocated parking for those patients undergoing treatment.

Opening hours

Day treatment unit and clinic: 8.00am - 6.00pm

Ward visiting times: 2.30pm - 8.00pm