Cancer is a major cause of illness in Australia and has a substantial social and economic impact on individuals, families and the community.
Cancer control is one of Australia’s nine National Health Priority Areas (NHPA) and Sydney North Health Network (SNHN) works to direct public attention and health policy towards increased participation in screening for cervical, breast and bowel cancer in the eligible Northern Sydney Primary Health Network population. In collaboration with the Cancer Institute NSW and other stakeholders, SNPHN supports the NSW Primary Care Strategy for Australia’s three cancer screening programs – The National Bowel Cancer Screening Program, BreastScreen Australia and the National Cervical Screening Program, in addition to skin cancer prevention, smoking cessation, alcohol consumption reduction strategies and other initiatives which work to decrease the incidence of cancer.
Cancer screening for bowel, breast and cervical cancer can help detect cancers in the early stages, before there are any symptoms of the disease, offer more effective treatment and management options and may significantly improve outcomes for patients. Currently, SNPHN screening rates are slightly higher than NSW rates, however we believe we can do better.
The intended outcome of the Strategy is that even more primary care providers, particularly in general practice, will recommend screening and follow-up to patients who are eligible for screening. We know that primary health care providers can have a significant impact on encouraging people to screen.
SNPHN aims to consult with general practice to determine the support needed to achieve higher screening rates and work with the local community and health care providers to create a partnership approach to improve cancer screening participation.
Practice software and the CAT4 data extraction tool can be used to identify patients who are eligible and may not have participated in appropriate timely screening, been followed up or maintained with ongoing screening. Recipes under individual “programs” screening.
The National Cancer Screening Register
The new National Cancer Screening Register supports the renewed National Cervical Screening Program now, by providing a national electronic infrastructure for the collection, storage, analysis and reporting of screening program data. It issues invitation kits, reminder letters and stores cancer screening test results when a person has participated in the National Cervical Cancer Screening Program. The National Bowel Cancer Screening Program will follow during 2019.