A strategy to deliver world class cancer care for children and young people has been published by the SNP Government.
Collaborative and Compassionate Cancer Care, the Cancer Strategy for Children and Young People in Scotland 2021-2026, was launched by Health Secretary Humza Yousaf MSP during an online event.
The strategy highlights 10 priorities for the next five years, supported by almost £6 million investment, including:
working towards funding genetic testing to provide personally targeted treatment
expanding Chimeric Antigen Receptor T-Cell therapy (CAR-T) to teenagers and young adults
setting up a national molecular radiotherapy service for children
funding a dedicated health workforce to care for teenagers and young adults
raising the profile of supported care services and holistic care
developing a single centre of excellence to provide radiotherapy treatment to improve survival among children with cancer
Kenneth Gibson MSP said:
“Every year in Scotland, around 180 children up to the age of 16 and 200 teenagers and young adults between the ages of 16-25 are diagnosed with cancer and it is the leading cause of death in children aged one to nine years.
“While technology and clinical trials have dramatically advanced cancer care and more children are surviving for longer, every child’s death is one too many and we must do all we can to ensure every life that can be saved, is.
“This strategy, backed by almost £6 million, marks an exciting time for children and young people’s cancer services as the first strategy for this age group.
“It outlines the SNP Government’s 10 ambitions to build on previous successes so that, by 2026, we will see improved and enhanced outcomes for patients and ensure equal access to care across Scotland.”
The strategy can be read in full here.
It has been written by the Managed Service Network for Children and Young People with Cancer (MSN CYPC) which is chaired by Andrew Murray and consists of specialist healthcare staff, members of the Third Sector, and cancer patients and their families.
The MSN CYPC model was set up in 2012 to ensure children, teenagers and young adults up to the age of 25 in Scotland with a cancer diagnosis have access to specialist services as locally as possible, and that care is equal wherever they live in Scotland, to give the best possible outcomes.