Breakout session 2: Diagnosing cancer earlier
It is generally understood that the earlier a cancer is diagnosed the better the prognosis of the patient. Late diagnosis is a major factor contributing to poor survival rates in England. Part of the issue is that cancer diagnosis can often be missed. The National Awareness and Early Detection Initiative has been set up to ensure that the commitments in the CRS are turned into reality.
Harpal Kumar, Chief Executive, Cancer Research UK, and Co-chair, National Awareness and Early Detection Initiative
Professor Mayur Lakhani, Lead GP, National Patient Safety Agency – Missed Diagnosis Project
Download Harpal Kumar's presentation [Powerpoint]
Download Mayur Lakhani's presentation [Powerpoint]
Data on levels of knowledge of cancer systems show that women are more aware than men, and BME groups are less aware.
Research shows that the main barriers to people consulting their GPs about cancer symptoms are that they are worried about what the doctor might find, worried about wasting the doctor's time, and that they think they won't be able to get an appointment.
The risks contributing to late diagnosis are dysfunctional communication patients, GPs and consultants, and the organisational culture.
To improve the situation, primary and secondary care need to link in more closely, and there needs to be local level leadership.
Breakout session three: Ensuring better treatment and reducing cancer inequalities >