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Most cancer patients in England very content with their care

Latest national survey results reveal highest ratings to date

Caroline White

Monday, 30 July 2018

Most cancer patients in England are happy with the care they receive, reveal the results of the latest national survey* of patients’ experience of their disease.

The survey asks people with cancer across England to rate their care on a scale of zero (very poor) to 10 (very good). Overall ratings have continued to improve, with year on year increases in reported positive experience.

The most recent 2017 survey has shown that almost 70,000 patients rated their overall care nine out of 10. Patients also reported more positively on areas, including involvement in decisions about care and treatment, and being treated with dignity and respect.

But the survey also points to areas for further improvement, including follow up community and social care after treatment.

Work is underway to make improvements in these areas, to ensure patients receive personalised care to live with and beyond cancer, says NHS England.

Key findings of the national cancer patient experience survey for 2017 show that the 69,072 respondents gave an average rating of 8.80, with 94 per cent of respondents giving a rating of seven or higher, a statistically significant increase on last year’s score.

Most (79 per cent) of respondents said that they were definitely involved as much as they wanted to be in decisions about their care – a statistically significant increase on last year’s figures.

Some 91 per cent of respondents said they were given the name of a nurse specialist who would support them through their treatment – a statistically significant increase from last year. And most respondents said that it had been “quite easy” or “very easy” to contact their clinical nurse specialist.

Some 89 per cent of respondents said that, overall, they were always treated with dignity and respect while they were in hospital – a statistically significant increase from last year.

And nearly all (94 per cent) of respondents said that hospital staff told them who to contact if they were worried about their condition or treatment after they left hospital.

Cally Palmer, NHS England’s national cancer director, said: “The results of this survey are a testament to the hard work and dedication of NHS staff.

“Supporting people with cancer is a key part of the NHS’ 10-year plan which is why one of our key ambitions is to put cancer patient experience front and centre of our work.

“The latest statistics are clear – the number of people living beyond cancer is at a record high and we now know that the vast majority of people with cancer also feel positive about the care they receive.”


*National Cancer Patient Experience Survey 2017: National Results Summary. A survey prepared by Quality Health, 2018.

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