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Meet the team


  • Tania Anastasiadis: Tower Hamlet CCG
  • Zara Gross, Jo Aracena and Julia Ozdilli : Transforming Cancer Services Team for London -Early Diagnosis

What is the challenge your project is going to address and how does it connect to your chosen theme?

Delayed diagnosis in cancer has been attributed to several reasons that can be categorised as patient related or healthcare system related. One of the patient related contributing factors is low engagement in the national cancer screening programmes. A recent analysis (2019) of cancer diagnosis data from  Tower Hamlets in London revealed that a  proportion of patients experienced an avoidable delay that contributed to their late diagnosis. General practitioners (GP) reflecting on this data indicated that better patient engagement  with the national screening programmes can address part of this problem.However, these programmes are often coordinated centrally which may influence patient engagement. Studies have shown that uptake is increased significantly when the invitation is re-inforced by the patient’ GP. With the growing pressures on primary care, there is reduced capacity within general practice to follow up on patients who have not completed their recommended screening.

What does your project aim to achieve?

The aim of this project is to design a partnership between general practices and community pharmacists to  engage with patients who have missed their recommended screening.


– Identify stakeholders that can help shape this partnership

-Understand the potential data sharing pathway between general practice and community pharmacists

-Gauge the potential for community pharmacists to engage with patients who have missed their recommended screening

-Pilot the new service and evaluate the experience of all stakeholders

What and how is your project going to share learning throughout?

The sub-optimal engagement of people with the national screening programme is a national problem that contributes to the delayed cancer diagnosis.

Nationwide, general practices are under significant pressures and they have limited capacity to widen services including follow up with people who have missed their recommended screening.

Therefore, the potential collaboration between community pharmacists and general practice can help address this problem. The findings and the learning achieved through this project are transferable and can applied to any locality in the UK.

How you can contribute

  • Collaboration with other localities who are interested in progressing such a project
  • Advice from healthcare professionals who may have tried a similar project

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