Prevention and Early Diagnosis

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Routes to Diagnosis

By National Cancer Intelligence Network, Public Health England

First published by the National Cancer Intelligence Network in 2010, Routes to Diagnosis defined a methodology to determine the route a patient took through the healthcare system before receiving a cancer diagnosis. Unexpected differences in how patients were diagnosed were uncovered, including large variation in short-term survival and many inequalities across different patient groups and cancers. Updates have been used to chart the impact of the National Awareness and Early Diagnosis Initiative, early diagnosis campaigns, improved treatments and the evolution of screening programmes. Results are used to monitor the changes in the distribution of cancers, and to understand better where we can best focus our efforts to improve outcomes.

Judges’ comments

“This was a lovely piece of work that is already well-known in the early diagnosis community. It has never been done anywhere else in the world and its impact on world cancer literature has been huge. A ‘no-brainer’ as the judges’ choice for a winner, it still has so much more to give.”


Highly Commended

Smear tests for everyone: targeted health information resources for women with learning disabilities

By Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust and Public Health England

In the UK, each year 3,000 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer and one third will die from the disease. However, it is a largely preventable cancer and the cervical screening programme saves 5,000 UK lives annually. But cervical screening attendance is decreasing year on year: challenges exist for women of different ages and from hard to reach groups, including those with learning disabilities. Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust has created two different, targeted free health promotion tools which are made for these women, their carers and healthcare professionals, and aim to help informed choice, reduce health inequalities and raise awareness of prevention.

Judges’ comments

“This produced a good increase in uptake of this service from a niche patient population that is not usually engaged and the team made nice use of non-traditional routes for publicising their work.”



Setting the Standard: Standardised Packaging of Tobacco Products

By Cancer Research UK and Action on Smoking and Health (ASH)

Cancer Research UK and Action on Smoking and Health worked together on a joint campaign for legislation to introduce mandatory standardised packaging in the UK. It began in 2011 and culminated in a vote in March 2015 where MPs passed regulations to introduce the measure. This was a successful campaign in a very challenging political environment. One in four cancer deaths are attributed to smoking, which kills more than half of all long-term users. Eight in ten smokers start before the age of 19 and the measure will reduce the glitzy appeal of tobacco products to children.

Judges’ comments

“What this team achieved was great! Its potential impact is huge and the two charities are to be commended for working together, to the same goal, to bring about a political change.”

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