BRIDGING the Gap is about change: changing attitudes towards and assumptions made about Neuroendocrine cancer, challenging delays, misdiagnoses, and restricted access to care and support to ensure all affected by this group of rare cancers have a clear, effective and holistic diagnostic/treatment pathway.
‘In England alone Incidence of Neuroendocrine Cancer rose by 371% (1995-2018) but in the same time period all-cancer incidence (excluding non-melanoma skin cell cancer) rose by only 116%.’
NCUK’s Bridging the Gap campaign is a wide-reaching but tightly focused campaign advocating inclusion in national cancer plans and implementation: promoting increased awareness, providing relevant information and educational opportunities to commissioners, policy makers and Healthcare Professionals (HCPs): to facilitate faster detection, earlier diagnosis and referral to the right care, at the right time, in the right place. Our goal is to have a dedicated Neuroendocrine Cancer care pathway supported by a National Access Plan to reduce current inequalities and achieve real equity.
The #ClosetheCareGap echoes these aims – together we can reduce inequity by:
- educating the public about cancer and what can be done to prevent certain cancers and/or reduce risk of others
- equipping healthcare professionals with skills and knowledge
- strengthening primary health care delivered in communities
- addressing through policy and programmes some of the social and economic factors that can negatively affect people’s health – widening and strengthening access routes
- increasing the resources – meaning both money and people – dedicated to cancer research, and tracking the burden of cancer nationally to more effectively shape where investment is used
- implementing country-specific cancer prevention and control plans that address each country’s unique needs and resources.
As individuals, we have an important role to play too:
- The first step is recognising inequity when we see it. Only then can we begin to challenge assumptions and biases, by listening to the perspectives of people living with cancer and working, with them, to #Bridge the Gap – to #Close the Gaps once and for all.
- The second step is in building stronger alliances and innovative new collaborations, because we know that together we can achieve almost anything.
- NCUK is not a stand alone organisation and works with many stakeholders – strengthening alliance and forging new collaborations. It is an important part of the ethos of our organisation to ensure that we incorporate the voices of our stakeholders in everything that we do.
- NCUK – “Get Involved” here
- The third step is all about bringing attention to a higher level—literally. Together, we will make sure our leaders know that we demand a commitment to prioritising cancer, to creating innovative strategies designed to confront inequity and to investing our resources to achieve a just and cancer-free world.
We will call on leaders to eliminate health inequities by addressing their root causes, ensuring that everyone has access to quality health services when, where and how they need them.
Join us, this World Cancer Day on 4 February and help close the cancer care gap for a cancer-free world.
Our time to act is now:
“Somewhere inside all of us is the power to change the world.” – Roald Dahl, ‘Matilda’.