Cancer patient pathways was introduced on January 1st 2015 in Norway for colorectal cancer, lung cancer, breast cancer and prostate cancer. During 2015, 28 cancer-specific pathways were established.
The Norwegian Directorate of Health aimed for a well-organized and more predictable patient process, without unnecessary non-medical delays related to assessment, diagnosis, treatment and / or rehabilitation.
The intention was to give both patients and their relatives predictability and security throughout the cancer process.
This project evaluates the introduction of the patient pathway process by looking at both inclusion in the pathway process, the process itself, and various outcomes (see below).
By linking data from the Norwegian Cancer Registry, Statistics Norway and the Norwegian Patient Register, we want to shed light on the following:
• Have the waiting times from biopsy to surgery, and in general, time from diagnosis to treatment changed after the introduction of the patient pathway process?
• Is there a selection in which patients are included in the patient pathways for cancer?
• Are there socio-economic differences in access to treatment and time for treatment after the introduction of the patient pathway process?
• Have any clinically important factors, such as stage, changed after the introduction of the patient pathway process?
• Has the introduction of the patient pathway process led to a more equal health service in Norway, regardless of where the patients live?
Results from this research project will be published in peer-reviewed journals. So far, the following articles have been published:
Decreasing waiting time for treatment before and during implementation of cancer patient pathways in Norway
Patient and tumour characteristics associated with inclusion in Cancer patient pathways in Norway in 2015-2016