Survivorship across the UK
The National Cancer Survivorship Initiative was launched in September 2008 and is a key initiative of the Cancer Reform Strategy (2007). The aim of the NCSI is, by 2012, to have taken the necessary steps to ensure that survivors get the care and support they need to lead as healthy and active a life as possible, for as long as possible.
The NCSI has identified key areas for improvement of health services in order to provide better support to cancer survivors:
- Moving the focus from cancer as an acute illness to a greater focus on recovery, health and wellbeing after treatment
- Planning an individual's care based on an assessment of their individual needs
- Empowering and supporting survivors to take an active role in their aftercare
- Tailoring aftercare support to enable recognition of signs and symptoms of further disease
- Measuring experience and outcome for patients rather than measuring clinical experience
Working with NHS Improvement, Macmillan and the NCSI piloted new models of aftercare to provide better post-treatment support. Read more in the NCSI report Living with and Beyond Cancer: Taking actions to improve outcomes 2013 [PDF, 4.12MB]. We are prioritising four key areas of survivorship work from this report; The Recovery Package, Stratified Pathways of Care, Physical Activity, and Consequences of Cancer and its Treatment and Patient Reported Outcomes Measures (PROMs). Read more about these on the NCSI website.
As a result of Macmillan's lobbying, the Scottish Government's cancer action plan, Better Cancer Care, focuses on supporting people living with and beyond cancer. A government working group on survivorship has been established to maintain the national focus on this issue.
The plan commits the government to making referrals to benefits and financial advice a systematic part of the patient journey. The government has invested £500,000 in Macmillan's services in Scotland to extend our benefits and financial advice network and pilot support for people wanting to return to work after cancer.
Macmillan has ensured that the latest Welsh Assembly Government cancer strategy, Designed to Tackle Cancer in Wales Phase Two, acknowledges the needs of people living with or beyond cancer and their carers.
We will be working with the Welsh Assembly Government to ensure that post-treatment support needs for people living with or beyond cancer are considered in future cancer strategies.
The Northern Ireland Assembly's Cancer Services Framework for Cancer Prevention, Treatment and Care will ensure that the development of follow-up care is a priority. Macmillan is working closely with the Assembly to deliver the framework across Northern Ireland.