There are many different doctors and healthcare professionals who make up the team that will look after a lymphoma patient. These professionals sometimes come from more than one hospital. The multidisciplinary team (MDT) will vary depending on where the patient is being treated but the Haematologist has overall responsibility for their care.
Healthcare professionals that can make up the multidisciplinary team could include:
Doctors and medical staff
- Haematologist/ Oncologist: a doctor who specialises in disorders of blood and blood cells, including lymphoma and leukaemia
- Haematology registrar: is a senior doctor who may be responsible for patients on the ward. The registrar supervises the residents and interns. The registrar is contactable on site whilst the haematologist attends ward rounds and meetings at specific times. Registrars may also be at some clinic appointments. The registrar will be in contact with the Haematologist to keep them up to date about the patients care and/or progress.
- Resident doctor: the resident is a doctor based on the ward for inpatients. The residents will often work closely with the nurses to help with the daily care of the patient.
- Pathologist: this is the doctor who will look at the biopsy and other tests in the laboratory
- Radiologist: a doctor who specialises in interpreting scans such as PET scans, CT scans and ultrasounds. Radiologists can sometimes take biopsies to diagnose lymphoma.
- Radiation oncologist: a doctor who specialises in treating people who have cancer with radiotherapy.
When a patient is admitted to hospital nurses manage most of the daily care. Like medical staff, there are different nursing roles. Some are listed below:
- Nurse Unit Manager (NUM): this nurse manages the ward and the nurses working there.
- Specialist nurses: these are highly skilled cancer nurses with additional training or experience in specific areas of cancer nursing and haematology.
- Clinical nurse specialist (CNS): are experienced in the area they work
- Clinical Nurse Consultants (CNC): generally, have additional education & training
- Nurse Practitioner (NP): have additional education & training to become a NP
- Clinical Trial or research nurses: manage clinical trials and will look after patients who are enrolled on a trial
- Registered Nurses (RN): They assess, plan, provide and evaluate preventative, curative and rehabilitative care for patients, and their families in the cancer setting.
Allied healthcare team
- Social worker: Can help patients, their families, and carers with non-medical needs. This could include personal and practical challenges that arise when a patient or family member becomes ill. For example, helping with financial support.
- Dietician: The dietician can give advice on nutrition. They can give patient education and support if a special diet is needed.
- Psychologist: Can help you with feelings and the emotional impact of the diagnosis and treatment
Physiotherapist: Is a health professional who can help with physical activity, problems and pain. They may use techniques such as exercises and massage.
- Exercise physiologist: A professional who specialises in the benefits of exercise to help patients get fitter for all around good health, or to treat patients with a medical condition through exercise. They can prescribe exercise routines.
- Occupational therapist: treat injured, ill, or disabled patients through the therapeutic use of everyday activities. They help these patients develop, recover, improve, as well as maintain the skills needed for daily living and working.
- Palliative care team: This service can be provided along with curative treatment and does not depend on prognosis. A palliative care consultation team is a multidisciplinary team that can include doctors, nurses, & allied health. They work with the patient, family, and the patient’s other doctors to provide medical, social, emotional and practical support.