The Maria Skłodowska Curie Memorial was opened in 1984 as an out-patient clinic. In 1995 the majority of other clinics were added.
The Maria Skłodowska Curie Memorial Cancer Centre and Institute of Oncology (MCMCC) is the leading Polish comprehensive cancer centre, as well as the primary government research institution devoted solely to oncology. Founded in 1932 by Maria Sklodowska-Curie, it is currently divided into 28 specialised clinical departments responsible for the diagnostics and therapy of different tumour types such as: Breast Cancer Clinic, Head and Neck Cancer Clinic, General and Visceral Surgery, Thoracic Surgery, Urology, Gynaecology, Haematology, Soft Tissue/Bone Sarcoma and Melanoma Clinic, Radiation Oncology, Brachytherapy and Diagnostic Radiology, Pathology and Molecular Medicine and Cell Research. Oncology, Gastroenterology, Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention Division and others.
The research departments are devoted to experimental therapies, epidemiology and prevention, pathology, imaging and basic research in the cancer biology. MCMCC is the major Polish comprehensive centre in the field of the treatment and research into sarcoma and melanoma. In total MCMCC provides 656 beds. The number of staff is 2517.
The centre has also an outpatient clinics for consultation and one-day chemotherapy.
The Palliative Medicine Outpatient Clinic is open every day (with two doctors and a nurse three days a week and three doctors two days a week). It also provides interventional procedures for pain treatment – peripheral and central blocks, TENS stimulation and bisphosphonates infusions.
In-patients have daily access to palliative team consultations as well as a psychologist, a physical therapist and a social worker. The consultation results either in introducing professional palliative treatment or admission to the Palliative Care Unit. Patients also have rapid access to other specialties whenever needed.
Palliative and supportive care
The unit of Palliative Medicine is now affiliated to the Oncology and Internal Medicine Department helping to integrate care. The members of the palliative care team are: three doctors specialising in palliative medicine (two anaesthetists and one internal medicine) and eight nurses, one of them is also qualified as anaesthetic nurse. The Palliative Care Clinic comprises: out-patient clinic and an in-patient unit with eight beds. It provides management for patients still receiving tumour-specific therapy as well as for patients with no further anticancer treatment. If needed, patients from home and hospices can be admitted for palliative radiotherapy, port-a-cath implantation and alternative (invasive) pain treatment. Patients also receive end-of-life care.
The integration of palliative care with oncology care may facilitate the optimal and appropriate anticancer therapy according to best supportive care rules. The goal is to start early palliative care for patients with advanced cancer. This system allows planned steps of care and provides resources in advance. Part of the team's interest is to recognise early stages of cachexia and to provide help in every area (managing symptoms, emotional and spiritual needs), of the patients life and to improve their quality of life. Special attention is given to the psychosocial support thanks to close cooperation with Psycho-Oncology Unit.