Investigations and referral for suspected cancer in primary care in New Zealand – A survey linked to the International Cancer Benchmarking Partnership

This article from our neighbours across the Tasman provides insight into delayed diagnosis due to barriers for GPs in referring patients for suspected cancer. Cancer survival in New Zealand is less than that seen in Australia. This study used a survey developed as part of the International Cancer Benchmarking Partnership (ICBP) to assess issues relevant to GP’s in the management of patients with symptoms suggestive of cancer. The results found that access to diagnostic tests and specialist advice is more limited and slower compared to 11 other ICBP regions. Access and time to testing was much less in private health care compared to the public care system. Overall, this paper highlights that improvements to access and waiting times are needed to improve outcomes for cancer patients in New Zealand. Read the full article here.
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