Patients will benefit from a significant investment across South Yorkshire, Bassetlaw and North Derbyshire aimed at improving the stage at which cancers are diagnosed and making more cancers curable.

South Yorkshire, Bassetlaw and North Derbyshire Cancer Alliance, part of Health and Care Working Together in South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw (a developing Accountable Care System), has been allocated £6.4 million, over the next two years, from the NHS England National Cancer Transformation Fund.

The successful bid for national monies will transform cancer services across South Yorkshire, Bassetlaw and North Derbyshire and allow patients to be seen more quickly, have faster access to diagnostic testing and find out earlier whether or not they have cancer. This will improve their chances of survival and quality of life.

Hospital Trusts and Clinical Commissioning Groups in South Yorkshire, Bassetlaw and North Derbyshire are in the process of developing proposals to improve how patients access services and develop new ways to treat patients, leading to earlier diagnosis of cancers. The transformation funding will help support organisation working in conjunction with their partners in other parts of the health and care system, such as GP practices, to deliver changes.

Other projects the funding will support include increasing public awareness of cancer and the screening tests available to them, implementing more effective and less intrusive testing for bowel cancer and developing education for primary care workers around early diagnosis.

In addition to this funding, the Alliance has been awarded money to improve the experience of people living with and beyond cancer in the region. The project, which is part funded by Macmillan Cancer Support, reflects the aspiration of the Cancer Alliance to develop services based around the whole person, not just their cancer.

The money allocated to support the Macmillan Living With And Beyond Cancer Programme will provide greater communication between the different healthcare professionals that look after patients, both in hospital, GP practices and their local community and will mean that their care is more co-ordinated.

Julia Jessop, South Yorkshire, Bassetlaw and North Derbyshire Cancer Alliance Programme Director, said: “This is great news for patients, identifying and treating cancers early can save lives. Increasing cancer awareness and educating the public about screening and early symptoms is a key priority and this funding will enable us to do so effectively.

“We will be sharing our findings as well as learning from other areas who have led on this important work. This will give us the opportunity to work together across health and social care services which will ultimately increase the number of people who survive cancer and improve quality of life for patients living in South Yorkshire, Bassetlaw and North Derbyshire.”