Cancer Awareness and Earlier Diagnosis (AEDI)

Every two minutes someone in England will be told they have cancer. Half of people born since 1960 will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime, with that proportion continuing to rise. The good news is that cancer survival is at its highest ever, with significant improvements made over the last 15 years. More than half of people receiving a cancer diagnosis will now live ten years or more. This progress has been driven by improvements in our knowledge of how to treat and control cancer, combined with the commitment of NHS staff to deliver transformative care. ( Achieving World-Class Cancer Outcomes, A Strategy for England 2015-2020) 

The first job of any strategy or plan on cancer must be to prevent as many people from ever having to experience it in the first place.  Earlier diagnosis makes it more likely that patients will receive treatments which can cure cancer. It saves lives.  (Achieving World-Class Cancer Outcomes: Taking the strategy forward, May 2016)

Awareness and Early Diagnosis Clinical Advisory Group

The South East Cancer Clinical Network (SECN) Awareness, Early Diagnosis (AEDI) programme supports a continuous conversation across organisational boundaries about improving awareness and early diagnosis of cancer.  Bringing together local CCGs, Trusts, Cancer Research UK, Macmillan, Public Health England Screening and Immunisation colleagues and patients our Clinical Advisory Group meet quarterly to focus on Awareness and Early Diagnosis initiatives.  

The AEDI Clinical Advisory Group (CAG) meetings provide an opportunity to talk to commissioners and providers about national and local developments affecting awareness and early diagnosis of cancer, share good practice and agree how the SECN can best support improvements. Through this forum the SECN has nurtured the development of community cancer leadership to embed awareness, early detection and diagnosis within CCGs. 

The Chair of the AEDI CAG and Clinical Lead for the AEDI Programme is Dr Tina George. Tina is a GP in Horsham and Mid Sussex CCG and the Clinical Lead for Cancer for both Horsham and Mid Sussex and Hastings and Rother CCGs.


Cancer Research UK


Awareness and Earlier Diagnosis Resources

Awareness and Early Diagnosis Cancer Dashboard

Emergency Presentation Audits

It is widely accepted that patients who are diagnosed with cancer as a result of an emergency presentation to hospital have significantly lower survival rates than those who are diagnosed via a GP 2 week wait (2WW) referral. It is an objective of the South East Cancer Strategic Clinical Network to understand variations in the rates of emergency presentations across Kent, Sussex and Surrey and to support Primary Care colleagues in the quest to reduce avoidable emergency presentations of cancer. All GP practices within Coastal West Sussex CCG (CWS) and Hastings and Rother CCG (H&R) were invited to audit their 6 most recent hospital emergency presentations which led to a diagnosis of cancer. The practices were then asked to present their audit results at a practice meeting to share the overall lessons learnt. This report summarises the results of both the CWS and the H&R audits to draw out similarities, differences and lessons learned. 

The following instructions and audit templates, based on RCGP audit were used by NHS Coastal West Sussex CCG and NHS Hasting and Rother CCG.

Screening Toolkits -  Increasing participation in national cancer screening programmes across: a toolkit for GP practices