NHS England (NHSE) has announced that it will fund the first ever national metastatic breast cancer audit, in a bid to provide accurate figures of how many people in England are living with secondary breast cancer.
In a statement, UK-based charity Breast Cancer Now said it was ‘proud’ of the milestone after campaigning for over a decade for improved data collection.
The charity added that the announcement for the national metastatic breast cancer audit comes 12 years after the National Cancer Intelligence Network committed to delivering this data, in response to an earlier Breast Cancer Now campaign.
The audit will capture data in a bid to provide insight into the experiences and needs of women with metastatic breast cancer.
It will also support the NHS in designing and planning services, informed by the data from the audit, for patients living with this type of cancer.
“Until now, women with secondary breast cancer have felt overlooked and forgotten at an already frightening and challenging time. This is why we’ve repeatedly called on UK governments to create audits to gather the data that will enable us to understand and meet patient needs,” said Delyth Morgan, chief executive at Breast Cancer Now.
“While this data won’t be available immediately, it brings hope for patients in the future – we’ll support NHS England as they develop the audit to ensure it brings us the insight that we have lacked but so badly needed, to inform the development of treatment, care and support that gives people with this devastating disease the best chance to live well for as long as possible,” she added.