Lupus Clinic is Centre of Excellence

13th Aug 2019

Vice Chair and Trustee Yvonne Norton MBE commented: “The facility at City Hospital continues to fulfil all the criteria required to remain a Lupus UK Centre of Excellence. We are pleased that the relationship between City Hospital Lupus Unit and the Renal Lupus Unit Clinic at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital continues to work so well.

Lupus is a debilitating disorder of the immune system known as an autoimmune disease. Patients with lupus typically experience their immune system turning against parts of the body it is designed to protect, leading to inflammation and damage to various body tissues. Currently there is no cure for lupus, however effective treatments can ensure people with the disease can lead active, healthy lives.

Birmingham lupus clinics (including City, QEH and BWH) were appointed the first Lupus UK Centre of Excellence in 2005.

Professor Caroline Gordon recalled the excitement that generated for staff. She said: “Patient safety is our number one priority, and all our staff were delighted then to be recognised as working for a centre of excellence, as much as we are to have our status reconfirmed. We are proud to provide both an excellent clinical service and active research unit, aiming to improve outcomes of the disease.

“Our patients always come first and with lupus being a lifetime condition, we are able to form lasting relationships with our patients as we see them through the highs and lows of their symptoms. As we work with them to continue our research into the condition we hope to improve treatments which will enhance quality of life for those living with the disorder.”

Rebecca Gilman, Lupus Research Clinical Nurse Specialist added: It’s hugely important to be a Lupus UK Centre of Excellence because it matters to lupus patients. Our patients tell us it is difficult having an unpredictable condition, and so it is important that their condition is managed well. They tell us they want experienced clinicians using well established treatments in a logical and standardised way.

“As lupus is not common it takes time to build up this experience, and patients tell us they want to be able to come to a centre that has been checked independently. Lupus UK do this with their Centre of Excellence assessment, and if awarded, this status independently validates that staff at the awarded centre really do understand the condition, lupus patients and they will be giving them the best possible care and treatment.

Long-time patient Angela McNab who has lived with lupus for nearly 30 years agrees, as she explained: “The experience of being treated at City Hospital is a positive one, because they allow me to be part of the management of my disease.”

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