Cancer Survivorship; Research is a long term commitment. Does current trial banding reflect this?


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Nicola Rivington1,Ann O'Callaghan1
1Portsmouth Hospitals Trust

Abstract

Background

Funding is based on a banding system devised in 2008. Since then, with increasing cancer survivorship, without prolonged follow-up, data on late toxicities and patient experiences are lost to medical science.

Our objective is to analyse the proportion of research work engaged in long term follow up. We anticipate that long term follow up will be an increasing feature of cancer trials.

Method

Data was collected from 50 active band 3 studies which require long term follow up –totalling 978 patients requiring >5 years data collection.

 

‘Follow Up’ is defined as data required from patient visits, telephone contact and investigations.

 

Follow up categories are; 5 years, 10 years and until disease progression or death.

Results

73% of open trials (50/69) require  Long Term follow up (>5 years)

8 trials require 5 years follow up, 13 trials; 10 years follow up and 29 trials (58%) require data until disease progression or death.

Total patient number recruited to date in these 69 open studies is 2210.

 

978 patients, 44% of all recruited patients, require long term follow up.

 

Of these 12% (119) need 5 year follow up, 42% (410) need 10 year Follow up and 56% (449) until progression of disease or death.

Conclusion

This provides a clear picture of current follow up requirements and a clear appreciation that trial participation from a patient and staff resource perspective is a long term commitment for accurate and mature survivorship data.

At PHT we use the NIHR intensity tool to calculate human resource costs for all clinical trials. An analysis of this highlights the disparity of resources required between band 3 trials. Our cancer trials predominate in the high intensity and high resource requirement. We might hypothesise that with increasing resource pressures without a change in the banding structure it may become difficult to open these trials.