Cancer services

Cancer Services provides a comprehensive service to our patients who are referred with suspected cancer as well as already diagnosed cases.

Patients referred with suspected cancer are tracked and monitored through their diagnosis, treatment and follow ups. Some specialist services are provided by tertiary centre but these patients are still tracked and all our staff work to ensure that cancer targets are met.

The cancer services that we provide care for are:

  • Breast cancer
  • Children’s cancer
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Gynaecology
  • Haematology
  • Head and Neck cancer
  • Lung cancer
  • Skin Cancer
  • Upper GI cancer
  • Urology

Wait times

The ‘rules’ that govern cancer waits are complex so can be difficult to understand. There are specific targets that have to be met and strict rules that have to be applied for compliance.

The Access Policy provides some local variance to the national rules that we are permitted to apply. Click here to see the latest National Cancer Waiting Times.

Essentially there are 8 key targets that we have to meet:

  • 2 weeks from urgent GP referral for suspected cancer to first outpatient attendance – 93% performance required
  • 2 weeks from symptomatic breast referral (cancer not suspected) to first outpatient attendance – 93% performance required
  • 31 days from decision to treat to first definitive treatment for cancer – 96% performance required
  • 31 days from decision to treat or earliest clinically appropriate date (ECAD) to subsequent treatment (surgery, drug or radiotherapy) for all cancer patients including those with a recurrent – 94% performance required for surgery, 98% for chemotherpay and 96% for radiotherapy
  • 62 days from urgent GP referral for suspected cancer to first definitive treatment for cancer – 85% performance required
  • 31 days for suspected children’s cancers, testicular cancer, and acute leukaemia – 85% performance required
  • 62 days from referral from NHS Cancer Screening Programmes (breast, cervical and bowel) to treatment for cancer 90% performance required
  • 62 days from a consultant’s decision to upgrade the urgency of a patient (e.g. following a non- urgent referral) to first treatment for cancer (no target has been set for this yet)
  • Receipt of two week wait referral for suspected cancer, receipt of urgent referral from a cancer screening programme (breast, bowel, cervical), and receipt of two week wait referral of any patient with breast symptoms (where cancer not suspected), to the date the patient is informed of a diagnosis or ruling out of cancer – 75% performance required

For any questions or advice please contact Zena, Cancer Services Manager, on email Zena.Lane@tst.nhs.uk