Faster Diagnosis Programme

Rapid Diagnostic Centre

This is a service model that aims to diagnose cancer (or not) at an early stage and in a timely manner. The Rapid Diagnosis Centre programme forms part of the NHS Long Term Plan ambitions for cancer delivering faster and earlier diagnosis and improved patient experience. The Centre is not a physical building but a pathway and therefore the Northern Cancer Alliance refers to this development as a Rapid Diagnostic Service to avoid confusion.

The implementation of Rapid Diagnostic Services  is also regarded as a significant contribution to the pandemic recovery process. Rapid Diagnosis Services are underpinned by seven core principles that allow any early diagnostic service pathway to be re-modelled to deliver an improved patient experience and more efficient and effective care.

The national aim in 21/22 is for 50% of the population to have access to serious non-specific symptom pathways (historically these have often been referred to vague symptoms pathways). The Northern Cancer Alliance hopes to have 100% coverage for a serious non-specific symptom pathways by the end of 2021 alongside developments in site specific services such as; combined upper and lower GI, breast, gynaecology and skin.  Please note that the site specific developments will not be available in all areas this year.