The Lung Cancer Policy Network has published a new report focusing on the importance of establishing high-quality care pathways for lung cancer.
Care pathways for lung cancer: building a foundation for optimal care sets out tangible actions to help policymakers implement effective care pathways that support treatment and decision-making, and which can improve the experience of care for people with lung cancer. These actions can be tailored to all health systems and countries.
The report, containing practical case studies, is based on a comprehensive literature review, combined with interviews with nine experts from across four continents and insights from Network members. Published during Lung Cancer Awareness Month, it marks the Network’s first major output looking at the whole care pathway.
Underpinning the case for widespread adoption of care pathways is the need to improve global outcomes for lung cancer, which is the leading cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide; it is predicted to account for over 15% of the total cost of cancer care between 2020 and 2050.1
Treating lung cancer is a complex process requiring a variety of specialists – from oncologists and nurses to dietitians and physiotherapists. People with lung cancer sometimes face stigma and barriers to equitable care. Meanwhile, approaches to lung cancer care are ever-evolving, including movement towards early detection along with advances in targeted diagnostics and treatment.
Against this backdrop, care pathways can help clinicians deliver high-quality, holistic care, while reducing cost inefficiencies for health services. But their value has not been universally acknowledged.
The Network’s research aims to address this, drawing on real-life evidence to support policymakers in realising the full potential of care pathways for lung cancer.
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Chen S, Cao Z, Prettner K, et al. 2023. Estimates and projections of the global economic cost of 29 cancers in 204 countries and territories from 2020 to 2050. JAMA oncology 9(4): 465-72