North West AHP Cancer Survey

Results and Training Needs Analysis

Allied Health professionals (AHPs) are the third largest professional workforce in the NHS with 14 disciplines. AHPs provide system-wide care to assess, treat, diagnose and discharge patients across social care, housing, education, and independent and voluntary sectors. By adopting a holistic approach to healthcare, AHPs are able to help manage patients’ care from birth to palliative care.

The role of AHPs in delivering cancer services is unclear, specifically the role of generalist AHPs. They play a pivotal role in diagnosis (radiographers), and personalised treatment, being a key link between primary and secondary care, however, they remain an underutilised resource within the cancer workforce. With 1 in 2 people expected to receive a diagnosis of cancer in their lifetime, we need to ensure all AHPs feel supported and have the right knowledge, skills and confidence to support cancer patients.

The North West AHP cancer survey was devised with the purpose to have a better understanding of the role AHPs have in supporting people affected by cancer, training needs, and an awareness of the value that AHPs can offer.

The survey was developed with support from AHP networks, building on previous surveys conducted by other cancer alliances across the region.

Valuable results from the survey have provided a greater understanding of how generalist and specialist AHPs are currently supporting cancer patients and a good insight into the current AHP training and educational needs. The following report includes full survey results and a list of recommendations to address report findings.