1 Forskningsenheden for Almen Praksis, Faculty of Health Sciences, Aarhus University, Aarhus University2 Department of Clinical Medicine - Regional Hospital of Randers, Department of Clinical Medicine, Health, Aarhus University3 Department of Public Health - Forskningsenheden for Almen Praksis, Department of Public Health, Health, Aarhus University4 Department of Clinical Medicine - Regional Hospital of Randers, Department of Clinical Medicine, Health, Aarhus University5 Department of Public Health - Forskningsenheden for Almen Praksis, Department of Public Health, Health, Aarhus University
Background: Denmark has the highest morbidity and mortality from cancer in Western Europe, and studies suggest that Danish cancer patients are diagnosed at a later stage than patients in the other Nordic countries. To address this issue a Danish hospital has introduced fast track diagnosis of cancer and expanded services to the general practitioners. Objective: To investigate the diagnostic delay of cancer, patient and provider satisfaction and health economic aspects in two Danish regions with special emphasis on the possible benefits of fast track diagnosis. Methods: The study will be designed as a cross-sectional study with the construction of a clinical database of all incident cancers in two Danish regions within a year (12,000 patients). Data will be collected from general practitioners, patients and national registers. In the first part of the analysis the general variation in diagnostic delay will be described in uni- and multivariate analysis models based on three types of delay (patient, doctors and system delay) and stratified by diagnosis. The second part of the analysis will focus on the possible benefits from fast track diagnosis in terms of reduced diagnostic delay, patient satisfaction and economic benefits. Perspectives: The study will provide important information on the actual diagnostic delay in the two Danish regions and identify differences in the diagnostic delay between the hospitals in the regions.