On Monday 22nd March the Gastroenterology team launched their new Non-Symptom Specific Rapid Diagnostic Centre (RDC) at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals (LTH) in line with NHSE Long Term Plan to provide a personal, accurate and faster diagnosis service, with excellent patient experience.
The Gastroenterology and Cancer Services teams have been working in collaboration with GPs over the past 12 months to provide a new cancer pathway called the Non-Symptom Specific Rapid Diagnostic Service.
This new pathway will focus on patients who frequently present at GP practices within Preston, Chorley and South Ribble with symptoms that although suspicious do not point to a specific cancer pathway.
This service will now allow GP’s with suspicion of an underlying cancer or a serious condition to refer their patients into secondary care for investigation via our rapid diagnostic pathway.
The process begins with the Non-Symptom Specific referral and the required pre-investigation results being sent by the GP to the RDC team at LTH. The referral will be clinically triaged by our clinical nurse specialist and diagnostics will be appointed urgently to rule out a suspicion of cancer or serious condition as soon as possible.
The process ends with a diagnosis being made and the generation of an internal referral to the appropriate specialty upon the findings of a cancer or serious condition.
In cases where no diagnosis or a diagnosis of a non-serious condition is made, advice will be given back to the GP for ongoing management within primary care.
By introducing this process we aim to reduce the discovery of cancer or serious conditions at later stages, when survival is poor and treatment options are vastly limited.
For Lancashire Teaching Hospitals patients this pathway will ensure that they are seen as quickly as possible, receive a timely diagnosis and are referred on where appropriate to the right service for further support or investigation, treatment or care.