For the latest updates on cancer during the Covid pandemic, always check the NCL Covid-19 GP website cancer pages.
For North Central London cancer remains the largest single cause of premature death. The three cancer screening programmes (breast, cervical and bowel) are delivered by the NHS through screening centres (bowel and breast) or in primary care (cervical). The reference guide in the downloads area highlights good practice in primary care.
Late stage cancer diagnosis, compared to early stage diagnosis, results in poorer survival rates, worse patient experience and significantly increased costs. Patients diagnosed through screening usually have early stage disease, and five year survival for these patients is 93% compared to less than 10% for those with stage four disease.
Cancer screening programme coverage* in North Central London is lower than both the London and the national average. There is evidence that interventions delivered through primary care can have a significant impact on improving participation in screening, overcoming some of the barriers and inequalities experienced by different patient groups.
*Note on Coverage & Uptake: Coverage is the number of people screened within a designated time period (e.g. 5.5 years for cervical screening) out of the number of eligible people. Uptake is the number of people who attend screening within 6 months of being invited, out of the total number invited.