Provider collaboration review: ensuring the provision of cancer services

Published: 21 July 2021 Page last updated: 21 July 2021

We looked at cancer care in 8 areas of England in March and April 2021.

We wanted to know whether people were getting the right care at the right time and in the right place, and how collaboration across local areas had made a difference.

Read the full document

What we did

We looked at cancer care in 8 areas of England in March and April 2021. This was when services were under the severe pressure associated with the second wave of coronavirus (COVID-19).

Local areas and organisations covered
  • Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland sustainability and transformation partnership (STP)
  • Cambridge and Peterborough STP
  • Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin STP
  • Our Dorset
  • South West London Health and Care Partnership
  • Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire Partnership
  • Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership
  • Surrey Heartlands Health and Care Partnership

What we found

This report shares the overall learning from the review, which falls broadly into the following themes:

  • Local systems have collaborated in different ways to try to ensure people’s continued access to cancer services
  • Local systems continued to make personalised care a priority despite the pandemic, but improving communications about people’s changing care pathways was vital
  • Collaboration occurred between providers locally to make sure that they had definitive lists of the most vulnerable people
  • Established integrated care systems were able to adapt their governance structures in response to the pandemic so they could make quicker decisions and help deliver cancer services
  • Systems have used redeployment and upskilling initiatives to make sure cancer services were maintained where possible, but in some places, redeployments may have adversely affected cancer services
  • Local systems focused on rapid improvements to online solutions – there were some innovative approaches with good outcomes for providers and patients, but online consultations are not ideal for some consultations and attempted diagnoses