Six new Optimal Care Pathways released for blood cancer treatment and care

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Optimal Care Pathways (OCPs)

Australia’s Blood Cancer Taskforce has launched six new Optimal Care Pathways (OCPs) for blood cancer treatment and care, setting the national standard of high-quality cancer care for all Australians impacted by blood cancers (including leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma).

The OCPs are trusted guides that describe what optimal care for a particular type of cancer should look like, putting patients at the centre of care decisions. These OCPs will set national standards of care and treatment for blood cancer patients across Australia, no matter where they live, or access treatment.

Each OCP was developed by Australia’s leading blood cancer treatment and care experts, and prominent clinical trial researchers. It involved extensive consultation to ensure each produced the very best standards in care; and has been approved and endorsed by the Federal, State and Territory health departments.

The development has been jointly led by the Australasian Leukaemia & Lymphoma Group (ALLG) and the Haematology Society of Australia and New Zealand (HSANZ) with support from the Leukaemia Foundation.

The six new blood cancer OCPs are:

  • Multiple myeloma (MM) – led by Prof Hang Quach
  • Chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML) – led by Prof Tim Hughes
  • Chronic Lymphocytic Leukaemia (CLL) – led by Prof John Seymour
  • Low Grade Lymphomas – led by Prof Judith Trotman and Dr Nicole Wong Doo
  • Paediatric Acute Leukaemia, and Adolescent and Young Adult Acute Leukaemia – led by Dr Caroline Bateman
  • Myelodysplastic Syndromes (MDS) – led by A/Prof Anoop Enjeti

The ALLG’s Scientific Advisory Chair, A/Prof Peter Mollee and CEO, Delaine Smith and many members were involved in identifying the six disease areas and in formulating a plan and the people involved in developing the OCPs.

Blood Cancer Taskforce Co-Chair and Director, Clinical Haematology at the Peter MacCallum Centre, and ALLG Member, Professor John Seymour said ensuring consistent access to best practice treatment and care has the potential to deliver substantial improvements in survival outcomes and quality of life.

“Someone’s postcode should not determine the level of healthcare they should receive in Australia. We know that every year we can save at least 1,375 lives by making sure people with blood cancers get the best treatment available. Optimal Care Pathways (OCPs) are the first step to making this happen,” Professor Seymour said.

Blood Cancer Taskforce Sub-committee Chair, A/Prof Mollee said, “The ALLG is proud to have contributed to the development of the OCPs and is committed to seeing the professional haematology community uptake to, and utilisation of, these new OCPs in regular practice.”

OCPs are one of the key recommendations in Australia’s National Strategic Action Plan for Blood Cancer (National Action Plan) – a blueprint for change in the lives of people living with blood cancer.

The ALLG continues supporting the Blood Cancer Taskforce on Optical Care Pathways to prepare an additional five Optimal Care Pathways. The ALLG Chief Executive, Ms Delaine Smith said, “The collaborative work of expert health care providers to develop each OCP to a very high-quality standard will provide a lot of reassurance to all health services Australia wide.”

The OCPs are available @ Cancer Council.

Access the National Strategic Action Plan for Blood Cancer report here.