Seven new Optimal Cancer Care Pathways (OCPs) will be available to Victorian GPs on HealthPathways Melbourne before the end of the year, covering head and neck, familial, basal and squamous cell, breast, endometrial, and ovarian cancers.
The pathways include information on screening, early detection, appropriate investigations and referrals, along with managing side effects and offering supportive care. The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander OCP has been embedded across various pathways to assist Victorian GPs in providing culturally safe care.
It was estimated that 144,713 Australians will be diagnosed with cancer in 2019. Many of these patients will present to a GP for screening, or with symptoms of a suspected cancer. The OCPs aim to provide Victorian GPs with the confidence to identify and support patients with suspected or established cancer in the community.
The pathways are part of broader work being undertaken by the Victorian PHNs to raise awareness and support adoption of the OCPs into primary care. This work is funded by the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services and is one of the many initiatives arising from the 2016-2020 Victorian Cancer Plan which aims to save 10,000 lives by 2025.
From January 2020, the Victorian PHNs will begin developing clinical and referral pathways for the remaining seven OCP HealthPathways, resulting in all 19 OCPs being available on HealthPathways Melbourne. The final seven OCPs are scheduled for release in October 2020.
For more information on the OCP HealthPathways project, visit the VTPHNA website.