Across the NHS, services are grappling with a common question: what will demand look like over the coming months and years and how can we manage it?
The COVID-19 national lockdown has created considerable disruption to the provision of cancer care. Performance figures reveal a worrying increase in waiting times and an adverse change in patients’ health seeking behaviour, leading to cancer being detected at later stages. Diagnostic capacity has had to adapt to this new world, with some clinics provided remotely, some capacity for COVID-19 being reserved in case of future spikes and the remaining capacity being limited by infection control measures on site, particularly when working with a cancer cohort.
We have experience of working in partnership with Cancer Alliances across the country to enable them to better understand their diagnostic demand and identify opportunities to optimally manage their staff, equipment and estate. Based on our lessons learnt and recent changes caused by COVID-19, we have identified five critical features that diagnostic demand and capacity models should include:
Overall, our approach to demand and capacity is based on working closely in partnership with local teams to develop tailored demand and capacity models. By transferring knowledge on how to adjust the variables included in the model, we ensure that our clients feel empowered to continue building on the solutions we have developed with them. We also work closely with senior leadership teams to ensure that the ‘so whats?’ of our findings translate to actionable opportunities and deliver tangible improvements to service delivery.
If you would like to discuss our support or require any further information, please contact Sophia Malik, Sophia.firstname.lastname@example.org.