Primary care involvement

One way to reduce the disparity of cancer outcomes and to improve cancer control is to better engage and support general practitioners (GPs) and practice nurses in the delivery of cancer care. GPs are often the first point of contact for people with early symptoms of cancer and they have a significant role in prevention, screening, follow up during treatment, the transition to survivorship and palliative care.

Creating stronger links between general practice teams and cancer services is a key element of CanNET.  GPs and other primary care providers need to be engaged at each appropriate point across the cancer care continuum.  In supporting the participation of primary care in cancer services, the following resource can be used to guide increased primary care involvement.

Better engagement of primary care providers will ensure prompt investigation of symptoms, earlier cancer diagnosis and timely referral to an appropriate multidisciplinary team.

Information resources relating to primary care's role in:

  • Reducing Risk (PDF 188KB)
  • Finding Cancer Early (PDF 181KB)
  • Managing Cancer (PDF 182KB)
  • Networks (PDF 187KB)

The following primary care link provides further information about Cancer Australia projects aimed at supporting primary care's role in cancer care. 

Role redesign

In 2009-10, Cancer Australia commissioned a literature review and consultation process to identify role redesign options that support greater engagement of primary health care providers in cancer treatment and surveillance post treatment. The project aims were to: 

  • identify existing national and international shared care models in oncology and in non-oncology disciplines such as diabetes and obstetrics;
  • test the findings of the literature review against the experience of Australian stakeholders; and 
  • make recommendations based on the evidence derived from the study. 

This report reflects the outcomes of the literature review and consultation process and contributes to the literature and information available in Australia. 

  • Final Report: Role Redesign Primary Care - Shared Care Models of Cancer Treatment and Surveillance Post Treatment (PDF 227KB)