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Improving early access to lung cancer diagnosis for Maori and rural communities

43 months
Approved budget:
Professor Ross Lawrenson
Health issue:
Cancer (oncology)
Proposal type:
Lay summary
Lung cancer survival in New Zealand is poor especially for Maori. This is because lung cancer is generally diagnosed at a late stage. Early stage cancer can be cured in 75% of patients. The reasons for late diagnosis can be due to both patient and system factors. Both need to be addressed. Our hypothesis is that a community designed intervention will increase early presentation for Maori with symptoms of lung cancer. This will be through a multi-site intervention within targeted populations to increase awareness of lung cancer, the benefits of early diagnosis and to reduce fear of presenting. There is a strong change orientation with the project which involves stakeholders such as the Maori community, GPs and lung cancer specialists. By initially targeting Maori we ensure we do not increase inequity in the system whilst aiming to improve the diagnostic pathway for all.