One of the largest surveys of cancer patient experience sets out a roadmap for how the NHS can meet their needs. The National Cancer Patient Experience Survey, one of the largest surveys of cancer patient experience, heard from 67,713 patients with a whole range of cancers. It reveals that 84 % of those who had received one to one support had significantly higher rates of satisfaction across all aspects of their care.
Other key findings include:
- 58 % said doctors or nurses gave their family or someone close to them all the information they needed to help care for them at home
- 68 % said their appointments started within 30 minutes of their appointment time at their last outpatient appointment with a cancer doctor
- 50 % who said it was necessary had received information about financial help
- 62 % reported enough nurses were on duty when they were admitted to hospital.
An independent economic study, commissioned by the Department of Health entitled One to one support for cancer patients, has also been published. The study looked at seven cancers and found that offering one-to-one support for cancer patients could save the NHS around £89 million by improving care and reducing unnecessary hospital stays and GP visits.
The analysis provides evidence for the potential benefits that investment in one to one support posts can achieve and has been backed by Macmillan Cancer Support who will invest £300 million to support the NHS in creating up to 2,700 support roles in hospitals and the community over the next decade.
Ciarán Devane of Macmillan Cancer Support says: "People affected by cancer continually tell us that having one-to-one support makes an enormous difference to their cancer experience, especially once treatment finishes.”
With an increasing number of private medical insurances covering cancer, the need or one-to one care is something insurers should heed.