The plan outlines a number of improvements for young cancer patients including a commitment to collect more data on patient experience from under 16s, a review of existing paediatric treatment centres and a focus on improving the transition between children’s and adults’ cancer services.
CLIC Sargent has recently been announced as one of the charity representatives on the Independent National Cancer Advisory Group, which has been established to advise and assess on progress of implementation of Achieving World Class Cancer Outcomes (AWCCO). The group is independent of Government, the NHS Arm’s Length Bodies and the National Cancer Transformation Board.
Kate Lee, Chief Executive at CLIC Sargent, said: “CLIC Sargent welcomes NHS England’s plans as they clearly set out NHS England’s ambitions in improving patient experience and diagnosis of cancer. It is particularly welcome to see commitments for children and young people with cancer in the Implementation Plan and we look forward to being part of the National Cancer Advisory Group which will advise and challenge NHS England on the delivery of these commitments.
“However, while we are pleased to see plans to invest in earlier diagnosis, this will not be improved for children and young people by investing in GP referral alone. We know that more than half of under 14s are currently diagnosed through emergency presentation. That is why we are campaigning for more research into the impact an emergency diagnosis has on children and young people with cancer.
“It is absolutely crucial that the plan to start collecting data from children with cancer in the same way it is currently done with adults; is prioritised. The longer it takes to start recording the data more vital evidence is lost which could be the key to improving the experience, treatment and outcomes for thousands of children and young people diagnosed with cancer every year.
To find out more about the strategy visit: https://www.england.nhs.uk/2016/05/cancer-strategy/