MethodsQualitative and quantiative study
Participants and CountryPatients admitted as an emergency and subsequently diagnosed with cancer. The study used HES data from 20 trusts as well as qualitative information from hospital visits to three cancer centres and three cancer units.
InterventionsThe study compared different care pathways using observation and semi-structured interviews with the staff involved.
OutcomesLength of stay and number of admissions for patients admitted as an emergency and diagnosed with a new cancer. The report investigators worked with the hospitals involved to formulate an optimised pathway for the care of sick patients with possible cancer.
The characteristics of the optimal pathway were:
Early identification of potential cancer in sick patients, prevention of unnecessary emergency admissions, alert/tracking systems to drive responsive care, rapid access to assessment and diagnostics for sick patients with possible cancer (ideally within 6 – 12 hours), getting patients on the right pathway at the earliest opportunity (ideally within 12 – 24 hours) and supporting organisational factors

From: Guideline chapter 1, Service Configuration

Cover of Diagnosis and Management of Metastatic Malignant Disease of Unknown Primary Origin
Diagnosis and Management of Metastatic Malignant Disease of Unknown Primary Origin.
NICE Clinical Guidelines, No. 104.
National Collaborating Centre for Cancer (UK).
Copyright © 2010, National Collaborating Centre for Cancer.

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