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Early diagnosis

The Cancer Clinical Network is aligned to the national ambition to achieve earlier diagnosis.  We support Clinical Commissioning Groups and GPs to improve earlier diagnosis and survival rates through GP-led training and education.

We are also participating in the national ACE programme which aims to Accelerate, Co-ordinate, and Evaluate learning to increase earlier diagnosis of cancer.

We will also support a reduction in emergency presentations of cancer through audit, analysis and recommendations for improvement across each tumour site and earlier diagnosis.


Multi-disciplinary Diagnostic Centres (MDCs)

The Cancer Clinical Network is working with six multi-disciplinary diagnostic centres to achieve a rapid cancer diagnosis and improved patient outcomes.  The goal is to achieve a timely diagnosis of cancer for patients with non-specific but concerning symptoms by using a streamlined MDC-based pathway.  The six pilots in the East Midlands are for: Southern Derbyshire, Nottingham City, Lincolnshire West, Mid-Nottinghamshire, Burton, and Kettering.

The aim is to evaluate how far a MDC-based pathway can:
  • Drive a shift from late to early diagnosis of cancer stages I and II when they are potentially curable.
  • Reduce the number of diagnoses resulting from an emergency presentation or other sub-optimal routes with associated poorer prognosis.
  • Drive improvement in overall patient experience.

Progress to date:

  • Each MDC pilot has a project plan, clinical pathway, and set of metrics.
  • The MDC group has also agreed to a core set of metrics, which will enable an overall regional evaluation.
  • The overall evaluation will comprise quantitative, qualitative and economic elements.  We are aligned to the national ACE (Accelerate, Co-ordinate, Evaluate) Programme.
  • The Academic Health Science Network is a key member of the MDC group and is supporting us with the evaluation preparation.

Be Clear On Cancer (BCOC)

Be Clear on Cancer campaigns have been running since 2010 to help improve earlier diagnosis of cancer by raising awareness of symptoms and encouraging those with relevant symptoms to go to their doctor.  Campaigns have previously focused on specific cancers (e.g. lung, breast).  Public Health England (PHE) is now exploring a different strategic approach that covers a range of symptoms (and cancers) in one campaign.

In partnership with the Department of Health, PHE will be running a regional BCOC pilot campaign in the East and West Midlands, focusing on abdominal symptoms.  The East Midlands Cancer Clinical Network is involved in supporting the planning and roll-out with stakeholders across the East Midlands.

The campaign forms part of the Government's commitment to help deliver the Independent Cancer Taskforce report "Achieving World-Class Cancer Outcomes: A Strategy for England 2015-2020."  The results from this pilot will help inform decisions about whether to expand the campaign in future.

The campaign is planned to run from 9th February to 31st March 2017, in the geographic area covered by the East Midlands and the West Midlands' Clinical Networks.  We have been liaising with a core team of national colleagues about the development of the campaign.


Who to contact for further information?
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Network Senior Quality Improvement Manager