60 seconds with Maria Pamburai: Haematology & Oncology CNS

How excited are you about the relaunch of our PPU Oncology service (POTS)?

I am very excited. We have not had the service since the pandemic, so this is positive news at the start of a new year; an opportunity to do the job I am passionate about.

What are the challenges POTS currently face or will face now it reopens? and how are we preparing for it?

We have not had any cancer treatments since the beginning of the pandemic. Some of our patients are now having treatments at home and some were switched to the NHS and having treatment at Finchley Memorial therefore, as we start the services we might have less patients. Adequate preparations have taken place prior to re-launching therefore most of the challenges have been addressed. We will continue to meet and evaluate the service once it has restarted.

Maria Pamburai

What does POTS in 2023 look like for you, what are your hopes and expectations with it?

I look forward to having a full diary with bookings each day. I still have virtual patients because they have treatment which does not require POTS attendance but would really love to get back to the routine of having patients physically here.

What do you enjoy most about delivering the POTS service to patients?

I am usually the first point of contact for patients, carers, relatives and consultants so my day can start from only having one clinic to millions of tasks to be completed in a short space of time. POTS delivers treatments for all private patients who require infusions as an outpatient. We have delivered a few complex non-cancer treatments which is quite exciting for us as we learn about other specialities and that keeps us motivated. I enjoy spending time with the cancer patients when they come for treatment as there is adequate time for holistic conversations which might not have occurred during consultation.

In your opinion, what is it about our unit and facilities that enable PPU to deliver a supportive POTS service?

In PPU we are very fortunate to have retained highly skilled cancer nurses, most units are struggling with staff retention as there’s high demand for chemotherapy nurses nationally. Most of the nurses have supported the NHS service therefore their skills are up to date and ready for re-opening. My role has always worked alongside the 12 North manager and I am looking forward to working with the new manager; we have worked together for nearly twenty years. POTS service is supported by many other stakeholders in the Trust and we work closely to ensure we have a smooth pathway for patients and that makes us unique.

Have you made any New Year’s resolutions? and do you think you will stick to them!?

Oh well does anybody stick to those! To be honest I have not set anything this year, I am feeling very positive about 2023 and I want to take better care of myself this year.

What is your perfect relaxation scenario?

I enjoy the comfort of my home, so my pyjamas and a warm drink indoors!