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Cancer patient survey shows quality of care at ‘record high’

Report shows nine out of ten patients have access to a nurse specialist, although concerns remain about communication and nurse numbers

Report shows nine out of ten patients have access to a clinical nurse specialist, although concerns remain about communication and nurse numbers

Cancer patient survey shows quality of care at 'record high'. The cancer patient survey shows quality of care at 'record high'. Overall, asked to rate their care on a scale of zero (very poor) to ten (very good), NHS patients gave an average rating of 8.8
Picture: iStock

Nine out of ten patients with cancer in England have a named clinical nurse specialist (CNS) but do not always find it easy to contact them, a report shows.

The 2018 NHS National Cancer Patient Experience Survey, completed by 73,817 patients, found 85.5% of patients found it 'quite easy' or 'very easy' to contact their CNS.

This is down from a score of 86.2% in 2017.

Some 88% of respondents to the NHS England-commissioned survey said that when they had important questions to ask their CNS, they had got answers they could understand all or most of the time.

Not enough nurses on duty for patients with cancer in hospital

Meanwhile only two thirds (67%) of patients thought there was always, or nearly always, enough nurses on duty to care for them in hospital.

Overall, asked to rate their care on a scale of zero (very poor) to ten (very good), NHS patients gave an average rating of 8.8.

Chief nursing officer for England Ruth May
Chief nursing officer for England
Ruth May. Picture: Barney Newman

Chief nursing officer for England Ruth May said: 'Patients' satisfaction with their cancer care remains at a record high with nine out of ten patients happy with the care and support they've received, which is testament to the hard work and compassion of NHS staff.’

Growing and sustaining the NHS workforce

Dr May said: ‘The NHS Long Term Plan will ensure that even more people receive earlier cancer checks alongside the best possible care and life-saving new treatments.'

Macmillan Cancer Support's director of policy Moira Fraser-Pearce said the results were a timely reminder that the government needed a fully-funded plan to grow and sustain the NHS and social care workforce.

'Anything less fails people living with cancer and the professionals that support them,' she added.

Further information

National Cancer Patient Experience Survey. 2018 Reports


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