B150: The Trial Gap: Reduced access to cancer trials for children and young people in Scotland.
1Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Edinburgh, UK,2Managed Service Network for Children and Young Poeple with Cancer, Tayside, UK
The Scottish Government recommends that all children and TYA (teenagers and young adults aged 16-24 years) with cancer should be able to participate in clinical trials due to reported benefits in survival and patient experience. We sought to determine how Scottish children and TYA fared in this regards compared to peers in the rest of the UK.
Information on available clinical trials by cancer diagnosis was collected from NCRI Portfolio Maps; the UK Clinical Research Network Database Portfolio; Edge database (regional directory of clinical trials); hospital data managers.
Trials (UK vs Scotland): The UKCRN site designates 22 UK cancer trials that are only for 'TYA Cancer' and 39 trials as 'paediatric'. Respectively, only 11 and 19 of these designated trials are available in Scotland. Furthe we found that 532 studies that could recruit TYA, of which only 150 are available in Scotland.
Treatment in Scotland (TYA vs paediatric): Treatment of children with cancer (0-15 years) is concentrated in three centres while TYA may be treated in up to 23 centres (2 TYA units and 21 adult hospitals).
Children and TYA in Scotland have reduced access to trials of cancer therapy compared to the UK as a whole. The 'trial gap' is exacerbated by incomplete listing of avilable trials and, for TYA, by their dispersion amongst numerous treatment centres.