This Clinical Reference Group (CRG) covers radiotherapy. Radiotherapy is the controlled use of high energy x-rays to treat many different types of cancer. In a few cases, radiotherapy can also be used to treat benign (non-cancerous) tumours. Radiotherapy may be used to cure an illness for example, by destroying a tumour (abnormal tissue); to control symptoms e.g. pain relief; to shrink a tumour to make it easier to remove, prior to surgery, and after surgery, to destroy small amounts of tumour that may be left.
Chair: Professor Nicholas Slevin, Consultant in Clinical Oncology, The Christie NHS Foundation Trust.
A key part of the CRG’s work is the delivery of the ‘products’ of commissioning. These are the tools used by the 10 Hub Commissioning Teams to contract services on an annual basis.
Service specifications are important in clearly defining the standards of care expected from organisations funded by NHS England to provide specialised care. The specifications have been developed by specialised clinicians, commissioners, expert patients and public health representatives to describe both core and developmental service standards. Core standards are those that all funded providers should be able to demonstrate, with developmental standards being those which may require further changes in practice over time to provide excellence in the field.
The following service specifications fall within the scope of this CRG:
- Breast Radiotherapy Injury Rehabilitation Service (Adult)
- Radiotherapy (All Ages)
- Brachytherapy and Molecular Radiotherapy (All Ages)
A commissioning policy is a document that defines access to a service for a particular group of patients. A NICE Technology Appraisal Guideline on the same topic will replace, or be incorporated into, a commissioning policy as appropriate. These are important documents that are developed to ensure consistency in access to treatments nationwide.
The following policies fall within the scope of this CRG:
- Proton Beam Therapy for cancer of the prostate
- The use of Stereotactic Ablative Radiotherapy (SABR) in the treatment of prostate cancer
- The use of Stereotactic Ablative Radiotherapy (SABR) in the treatment of previously irradiated tumours of the pelvis, spine and nasopharynx
- The use of Stereotactic Ablative Radiotherapy (SABR) as a treatment option for patients with Hepatocellular carcinoma or Cholangiocarcinoma
- The use of Stereotactic Ablative Radiotheraly (SABR) as a treatment option for patients with oligometastatic disease
- The use of Stereotactic Ablative Radiotherapy (SABR) as a treatment option for patients with Renal Cancer
- Stereotactic Ablative Body Radiotherapy for Non-Small-Cell Lung Cancer (Adult)
- Proton Beam Radiotherapy (High Energy) for Paediatric Cancer Treatment – NHS Overseas Programme
- Proton Beam Radiotherapy (High Energy) for Teenage and Young Adult Cancer Treatment – NHS Overseas Programme
- Proton Beam Radiotherapy (High Energy) for Skull Base Tumour Treatment – NHS Overseas Programme (Adult)
- Pallative radiotherapy for bone pain
- Radiotherapy after primary surgery for breast cancer
- Stereotactic radiosurgery/radiotherapy for ependymoma, haemangioblastoma, pilocytic astrocytoma and trigeminal schwannoma
Policy statements are brief documents that define the current commissioning position to support service contracting. They are interim documents for use while a full commissioning policy is being developed or until a formal NICE Technology Appraisal Guideline has been published.
The following policy statements fall within the scope of this CRG: