The National Cancer Survivorship Initiative (NCSI), created following the Cancer Reform Strategy (2007),
published its vision statement in January 2010. The initiative aims to improve the
on-going services and support for those living with and beyond cancer.
The initiative is a partnership between the Department of Health and Macmillan Cancer Support
and is co-chaired by the National Cancer Director, Professor Mike Richards, and the
Chief Executive of Macmillan, Ciaran Devane. NHS Improvement are supporting the
delivery of the NCSI through piloting models of improved care and support for adults,
young adults and child survivors in clinical test communities around the country.
Traditionally, the focus of cancer services is on cancer as an acute illness treated and
followed up by hospitals. The National Cancer Survivorship Initiative challenges this view. Dramatic
improvements in survival rates over the last ten years mean that cancer is becoming an illness
which may be cured or which might have the characteristics of other long term conditions that
people can live with for many years.
The NCSI vision document summarizes a range of evidence, that suggests the current
follow-up and aftercare arrangements are not meeting the full range of cancer survivors'
needs and do not provide value for money.
The Yorkshire Cancer Network Survivorship Programme
As a Clinical Network, part of the Yorkshire Cancer Network's remit, is to
coordinate the implementation of National Cancer Policy on behalf of our
commissioners and providers. The Yorkshire Cancer Network has therefore recently
launched a survivorship programme which aims to transform the way in which follow-up
and aftercare services are delivered across Yorkshire, in accordance with the National
Cancer Survivorship Initiative vision statement and the 5 key shifts cited by NCSI as
being fundamental to its achievement.
The programme is ambitious in its aim to transform not only the architecture of
services, but the whole landscape of support with:
Coordinated, commissioned packages of care across clinical service and organisational boundaries, with prompt access back into secondary care and seamless transition to end of life care as required
Education and training for health and social care professionals, patients and carers
The development and implementation of innovative self-management programmes within a robust framework of evaluation
Consistent use of Holistic Needs Assessment for all patients, covering all aspects of potential need
Provision of personalised care plans and treatment summaries for all patients
Risk stratified care with proactive case management of high-risk cases and remote monitoring where appropriate
Provision of information and education enabling patients to move forward with confidence in their ability to self-manage.