IMPACT – Improving the Management of Patients with Advanced Colorectal Tumours
Beating Bowel Cancer is proud to be involved in the Association of Coloproctology of Great Britain and Ireland’s (ACPGBI) new IMPACT initiative.
IMPACT will bring together all those involved in caring for patients with advanced colorectal cancer – defined as patients who have locally advanced or metastatic disease (disease which has spread to another organ) at the time of diagnosis or who develop local recurrence or metastases after treatment.
Surgeons, oncologists, radiologists, pathologists, nurses, patients and charity representatives gathered at the Royal College of Surgeons in London recently to hear a range of presentations relating to the complex needs of this group of patients.
The agenda included two exceptional patient talks, one delivered by Steve Clark, who does so much to support Beating Bowel Cancer in so many ways.
Key themes addressed included:
- The difficulties in managing advanced, locally recurrent and metastatic colorectal cancer
- How patients should be investigated
- How the diagnosis should be communicated to the patient and their family
- The impact of treatment on the patient and the family
- Whether there should be specialist MDTs separate from the ‘normal’ colorectal MDT to allow time for detailed discussion of the individual patients with advanced disease which often require complex care pathways
- Whether these complex cases should be managed ‘in-house’ or should referral for second opinions in specialist units be the norm?
- The importance of early access and robust referral pathways to specialist services / units which manage complex cases
- The opportunities that a comprehensive approach will bring in terms of research
- The importance of the early involvement of palliative care services
The ACPGBI will now develop a work plan to address these issues, with the ultimate goal being a set of ACPGBI guidelines specific to the management of advanced bowel cancer.
Patient and public involvement (PPI) –fundamentally important when designing and running research studies as patients bring valuable contributions by providing judgements based on their own experience and
understanding of their condition. Patients may also have different thoughts and ideas about what is important in terms of measuring outcomes and will often be able to predict whether a research study is likely to succeed by assessing whether the proposed research will seem acceptable to other patients.
Any major research funder will now only consider awarding a grant to researchers who have involved patients in study design and planning.
Beating Bowel Cancer fully supports the aims of IMPACT and look forward to reporting back on progress in due course.