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Help inform proposed changes to radiotherapy delivery in pancreatic cancer

Type of opportunity

Members of the Research Involvement Network are invited to contribute to discussion as part of a focus group. Focus groups will be conducted virtually, via Zoom video conferencing and should last no longer than 90 minutes. 

If you prefer not to take part in a focus group there is also an opportunity to complete an online survey alongside some background information that should be read beforehand.

About the study

The aim of this opportunity is to inform a draft Preliminary Policy Proposal for NHS England on the use of stereotactic ablative radiotherapy (SABR) for treating locally advanced pancreatic cancer.

SABR is a newer type of radiotherapy that delivers a higher dose in each treatment. Because the dose is higher, patients will attend fewer sessions over 1-2 weeks to complete the course of treatment.
SABR isn’t currently routinely available for locally advanced pancreatic cancer on the NHS, as previously there has been a lack of evidence that this therapy has benefits in comparison to those that are already available. However, this group of clinicians would like to make a case to NHS England to change this and offer SABR alongside chemotherapy. The requirement for fewer sessions and lower toxicity in comparison to chemotherapy means that there may be financial benefits and a potential improvement in a patient’s quality of life.

The clinicians would like to discuss this with people who have been affected by pancreatic cancer to draw from their personal or loved one’s experiences and provide their views on offering SABR to patients. These discussions and survey responses will help to inform and shape the draft proposal before it is submitted.

Once written, the proposal will be submitted to NHS England and a decision will be made on whether it should be progressed to the next phase where it will be developed into a new commissioning policy for use by NHS Trusts across England to integrate SABR in to standard treatment.

How will the study benefit people affected by pancreatic cancer?

If the proposal is successful, SABR will become routinely available in the NHS to everyone with locally advanced pancreatic cancer. This means health care professionals, patients and their families will have access to a greater breadth of treatment options when diagnosed with locally advanced disease with the ultimate ambition to significantly positive impact on patient’s quality of life.

Who is drafting the proposal and leading the focus group?

Dr Ganesh Radhakrishna, Consultant Clinical Oncologist, The Christie NHS Foundation Trust will be leading the focus group.

A working group of clinicians specialising in pancreatic cancer from across England will be drafting this proposal before it is submitted to NHS England.

When will this opportunity be taking place?

Please express your interest by no later than Friday 5th June 2020.

The focus group will be held in June 2020. Dates will be decided once participants have been confirmed. The deadline for returning the survey will be the end of June 2020.

Who can take up this opportunity?

This opportunity is aimed at anyone who has been affected by pancreatic cancer.

What steps will be taken to ensure that information about participants is stored and used in compliance with the provisions outlined in the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)?

Data will be kept on a password protected computer. Any personal data will only be used for the purposes of this project. Focus groups will be recorded, and transcribed verbatim. Recordings will be deleted following transcription.

What next/who to contact:

Please email your expressions of interest to Pancreatic Cancer UK's Research Team, these should briefly detail how you have been affected by pancreatic cancer and whether you would like to participate in the focus groups or complete the survey.