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Radiotherapy in Australia: report on the second year of a pilot collection 2014–15

By Australian Institute of Health and Welfare


Summary This report presents data from the second year of the pilot data collection on radiotherapy treatment which covers courses that started in 2014–15 and the waiting times for those treatments. Sixty-six out of 74 (89%) radiotherapy treatment sites in Australia provided data, including 100% of 40 public sites and 76% of 34 private sites. Radiotherapy activity Participating providers reported data about almost 56,400 courses of radiotherapy that began in 2014–15. These data showed that: public providers delivered 71% of courses; private providers delivered 29% breast, prostate and lung cancers were the most common reasons for radiotherapy 69% of patients starting a course of radiotherapy treatment were aged 60 and over more than half (58%) of the radiotherapy courses were intended to cure disease, 38% of courses were delivered for palliative purposes and 2.7% were to prevent disease (prophylactic) 2.1% of courses were for patients who were assessed as emergency cases (that is, radiation treatment should begin within 24 hours). Most of these cases were palliative. Waiting times In 2014–15, waiting times data were available for 93% of courses reported to the collection. Across all courses of radiotherapy for which data were available, 50% of patients received treatment within 10 days of being assessed as ready for care, and 90% received treatment within 28 days. Non-emergency patients reported waiting times which were the same as for all courses, as these non-emergency treatments represent the vast majority of courses. For those patients who were clinically assessed as emergency patients, 91% began treatment on the same day or the next day. The figure shows the number of days within which 50% of patients and 90% of patients commenced treatment (by intention of treatment). 50% of patients with a principal diagnosis of prostate cancer or breast cancer started treatment within 10 days; 90% of patients with prostate cancer started treatment within 33 days, and 90% of patients with breast cancer started treatment within 30 days

Topics: Cancer, Hospitals
Publisher: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare
Year: 2016
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