A clinical audit to investigate compliance with radiotherapy waiting time targets

Keen, Annie (2009) A clinical audit to investigate compliance with radiotherapy waiting time targets. BSc dissertation, University of Portsmouth.

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    Abstract

    Aim: Excessive waiting times for radiotherapy treatment can result in tumour progression and decreased tumour cure rates. Waiting time targets are set to aim to reduce cancer death rates, improve prospects of survival and the quality of life for cancer sufferers. This project aimed to re-audit a 2006 study concerning radiotherapy waiting times, looking at compliance with the '31 day wait' target for first definitive treatments set by the Department of Health, and the Joint Council for Clinical Oncology (JCCO) standards. Furthermore, compliance with the extended '31 day wait' target was explored and appropriate recommendations stated to ensure compliance is achieved by 2010 as recommended by the National Radiotherapy Advisory Group. The hypothesis was that compliance with the '31 day wait' target for first definitive treatments will decrease, and that compliance with the JCCO standards will increase. Methods: A retrospective audit was completed over an 18 month timeframe, and an audit sample of 3,246 treatments was analysed to investigate compliance with the '31 day wait' targets and the JCCO standards. Findings: The results of the data analysis revealed that compliance with the '31 day wait' target decreased by one per cent when compared to the previous audit in 2006, and compliance with the JCCO standards increased for all categories apart from category two (radical) patients. Compliance with the extended '31 day wait' target was fifty-nine per cent, and improvements need to be implemented in order to achieve compliance by 2010. Conclusion: Waiting times for radiotherapy have improved, but still remain unnacceptable. It has been recommended that measures are taken to increase the capacity of the department though recruitment and purchase of equipment to deal with the increase in demand. Furthermore, steps should be taken to improve the efficiency of patient pathways so that patients can commence treatment without unnecessary delays.

    Item Type: Dissertation
    Departments/Research Groups: Faculty of Science > School of Health Sciences and Social Work
    Depositing User: Jane Polwin
    Date Deposited: 20 Jan 2011 12:48
    Last Modified: 28 Jan 2015 11:14
    URI: http://eprints.port.ac.uk/id/eprint/652

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