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The care of older cancer patients in the United Kingdom

Gomes, Fabio; Lewis, Anna; Morris, Rob; Parks, Ruth; Kalsi, Tania; Babic-Illamn, Gordana; Baxter, Mark; Colquhoun, Kirsty; Rodgers, Lisa; Smith, Eleanor; Greystoke, Alastair; Bayman, Neil; Cree, Anthea; Ng, Cassandra; DE Liguori Carino, Nicola; Basile, Simone; Moore, John; Merchant, Zoe; Swinson, Daniel; Parbhoo, Anita; Jones, Rachel; Davies, Eleri; Danson, Sarah J.; Young, Robin; Morgan, Jenna; Wyld, Lynda; Corrie, Pippa G.; Doherty, Gary J.; Crawford, Kyle; Wright, Juliet; Reed, Malcolm; Ugolini, Fiammetta; Lind, Michael; Cheung, Kwok Leung; Harari, Danielle; Simcock, Richard


Fabio Gomes

Anna Lewis

Rob Morris

Ruth Parks

Tania Kalsi

Gordana Babic-Illamn

Mark Baxter

Kirsty Colquhoun

Lisa Rodgers

Eleanor Smith

Alastair Greystoke

Neil Bayman

Anthea Cree

Cassandra Ng

Nicola DE Liguori Carino

Simone Basile

John Moore

Zoe Merchant

Daniel Swinson

Anita Parbhoo

Rachel Jones

Eleri Davies

Sarah J. Danson

Robin Young

Jenna Morgan

Lynda Wyld

Pippa G. Corrie

Gary J. Doherty

Kyle Crawford

Juliet Wright

Malcolm Reed

Fiammetta Ugolini

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Professor Michael Lind
Foundation Professor of Oncology/ Head of the Joint Centre for Cancer Studies

Kwok Leung Cheung

Danielle Harari

Richard Simcock


© 2020 the authors. The ageing population poses new challenges globally. Cancer care for older patients is one of these challenges, and it has a significant impact on societies. In the United Kingdom (UK), as the number of older cancer patients increases, the management of this group has become part of daily practice for most oncology teams in every geographical area. Older cancer patients are at a higher risk of both under- and over-treatment. Therefore, the assessment of a patient's biological age and effective organ functional reserve becomes paramount. This may then guide treatment decisions by better estimating a prognosis and the risk-to-benefit ratio of a given therapy to anticipate and mitigate against potential toxicities/difficulties. Moreover, older cancer patients are often affected by geriatric syndromes and other issues that impact their overall health, function and quality of life. Comprehensive geriatric assessments offer an opportunity to identify and address health problems which may then optimise one's fitness and well-being. Whilst it is widely accepted that older cancer patients may benefit from such an approach, resources are often scarce, and access to dedicated services and research remains limited to specific centres across the UK. The aim of this project is to map the current services and projects in the UK to learn from each other and shape the future direction of care of older patients with cancer.


Gomes, F., Lewis, A., Morris, R., Parks, R., Kalsi, T., Babic-Illamn, G., …Simcock, R. (2020). The care of older cancer patients in the United Kingdom. ecancermedicalscience, 14, Article 1101.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date May 4, 2020
Online Publication Date Sep 15, 2020
Publication Date Sep 15, 2020
Deposit Date May 30, 2022
Publicly Available Date Oct 27, 2022
Journal ecancermedicalscience
Electronic ISSN 1754-6605
Publisher ecancer Global Foundation
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 14
Article Number 1101
Keywords Geriatric oncology; Older patients; Cancer; United Kingdom
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Copyright Statement
Copyright: © the authors; licensee ecancermedicalscience. <br /> This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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