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Radiotherapy

Health written question – answered on 19th October 2012.

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Photo of Julian Huppert Julian Huppert Liberal Democrat, Cambridge

To ask the Secretary of State for Health

(1) when he expects the next radiotherapy dataset to be published;

(2) what information he proposes the next radiotherapy dataset will contain on the provision and availability of intensity modulated radiotherapy in individual (a) cancer networks and (b) trusts.

Photo of Anna Soubry Anna Soubry The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health

The radiotherapy dataset (RTDS) is collected throughout the year. A report analysing the first full year's collection of the dataset, 2009-10 was published by the Department in August 2011. The 2010-11 data were published on the National Cancer Statistics and Analysis Team website in March 2012 at the following link:

www.canceruk.net/rtservices/rtds/RTDSDownloads/RTDS%202nd%20Annual%20Report%202010-11.pdf

Key data from the dataset are also available on the Cancer Commissioning Toolkit, which is available to providers, commissioners and other organisations with an interest in cancer services. The Cancer Commissioning Toolkit data from the RTDS are updated regularly.

The RTDS collects activity data on intensity modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) by trust provider. These can be identified by the preparation coding for IMRT, although they do not distinguish inverse and forward planned IMRT. Coding for IMRT has been evolving since the establishment of the RTDS and so additional guidance has been issued to provider trusts. This will help provide a consistent interpretation of coding and allow standard interpretation of IMRT in clinical practice.

We will shortly be publishing an update report on the state of radiotherapy in England that will contain survey RTDS and survey data on IMRT.

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