Our hospital, University of the Ryukyus hospital is located in Okinawa prefecture, southernmost prefecture of Japan, was established in 1970, and has 600 inpatient beds and 430 physicians. The Cancer Center of our hospital was established in 2007.
This center has an outpatient chemotherapy unit and a palliative care center.
There are 12 beds in the outpatient chemotherapy unit, and about 200 cases of chemotherapy are performed per a month.
The main activities of palliative care center are palliative care team and palliative care outpatient unit.
The main staff of our center is as follows: Physicians; medical oncologists certified by Japanese Society of Medical Oncology (2), specialist palliative care physicians certified by Japanese Society for Palliative Medicine (2), pain clinicians certified by Japan Society of pain Clinicians (2) and psychiatrist trained by Japan Psycho-Oncology Society (1), Nurses; certified nurse specialists on cancer (2), certified nurses on palliative care (2) and chemotherapy (1), Pharmacists; certified pharmacists on cancer (2) and on palliative care (1). Dietitian; certified dietitian on cancer treatment (1).
We have regular conferences on outpatient chemotherapy unit (×1/week), on palliative care team (×1/week) and cancer board (×1/month +?; as needed), and try to achieve the early integration of oncology and palliative care.
Our center provides all care, from cancer diagnosis to treatment, follow-up and end-of-life care for all cancer patients. Each tumor setting is staffed by oncologists with specific expertise in that area.
The center also actively participates in education, research and clinical trials across both specialties of oncology and palliative care.
The following services are provided at our hospital:
- Medical Oncology
- Surgical Oncology
- Radiation Oncology
- Gynecologic Oncology
- Urological Oncology
- Otolaryngological Oncology
- Dental and oral surgical Oncology
- Hematological Oncology
- Orthpedic Oncology
If it is necessary that multiple departments have to collaborate for the diagnosis and treatment planning, a cancer board is timely held.
Palliative and supportive care
The palliative care center consists of following staff: specialist palliative care physicians, pain clinicians, anesthesiologists, radiologist, psychiatrist, certified nurse specialists on cancer and certified nurses on palliative care, certified pharmacist on palliative care, dietitian and medical social worker We have regular conferences at least once a week where oncologists and palliative care physician discuss together about supportive care and palliative care for cancer patients. In addition, we have extraordinary meeting if any urgent matter to discuss arises.
There is no palliative care unit in our hospital, but 6 hospitals with palliative care unit in our prefecture.
We are usually in close cooperation with these hospitals and other home care facilities.
Therefore we can care for cancer patients not only in our hospital but also in the community from the initial treatment and care to the end-of-life care in consideration of patients' and families' hope.