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National Cancer Survivorship Initiative

Stratification Process

Stratified means that the clinical team and the person living with cancer make a decision about the best form of aftercare based on their knowledge of the disease, (what type of cancer and what is likely to happen next), the treatment (what the effects or consequences may be both in the short term and long term) and the person (whether they have other illnesses or conditions, and how much support that they feel they need).  The three forms of aftercare are:

  • Supported Self Management – where patients are given the information about self management support programmes or other types of available support, the signs and symptoms to look out for and who to contact if they notice any, what scheduled tests they may need such as annual mammograms, and how they get in touch with professionals if they have any concerns.
  • Shared Care – where patients continue to have face to face, phone or email contact with professionals as part of continuing follow up.
  • Complex Case Management – where patients are given intensive support to manage their cancer and/or other conditions.

The diagram below illustrates the stratification process.  Cancer patients will be treated according to which approach is most suitable, and the level of professional care (illustrated down the left hand side of the triangle) will vary accordingly. 

Cancer survivors may move between these different options according to how their cancer and its treatment progresses and whether they are more able to manage their disease, or whether they need more help. The proportion of people in each option will vary depending on the tumour type.

Last updated on March 26, 2013