EGA Institute for Women's Health


International Cancer Benchmarking Partnership (ICBP) Module 4

The ICBP is a partnership between England, Australia, Canada, Denmark, Northern Ireland, Norway, Sweden and Wales co-ordinated by the Department of Health (DH) in England with support from Cancer Research UK.

Module 4 of the ICBP is an international survey on time intervals from onset of symptoms to commencement of treatment in newly diagnosed patients with lung, colorectal, breast, or ovarian cancer. It aims to explore whether variation in cancer survival between the participating countries may be partly rooted in differences in time interval from first symptom until diagnosis and treatment.

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Prospective postal questionnaire survey


Module 4 seeks to explore whether variation in cancer survival between the participating countries may be partly rooted in differences in time interval from first symptom until diagnosis and treatment.


Patients diagnosed with breast, colorectal, lung and ovarian cancer during the specified period of the survey. 

Identification of potential participants

Patients will be identified via participating Cancer Registries using Cancer Waiting Times, Multidisciplinary Team and pathology data feeds.


  1. Aged 40 and over
  2. Alive
  3. Aware of their diagnosis of cance

Exclusion criteria

  1. Male breast cancer
  2. Patient questionnaire completed >6 months following diagnosis
  3. Patients who have previously had a separate cancer of the same organ (e.g. consecutive breast cancers)


  1. Patient questionnaire
  2. Primary health care professional questionnaire
  3. Secondary care questionnaire

Sample size per jurisdiction

Pilot study – 50 confirmed patients per primary cancer
Main study – 200 confirmed patients per primary cancer


Module 4 consists of a feasibility pilot and the main study.

The pilot study will cover patients diagnosed up to 5 months prior to the pilot study start in October 2012 and run for 3 months.

The main Module 4 data collection period will start April-June 2013 and run up until June 2014. It will include all patients newly diagnosed during that period.

English Study

The study in England is coordinated at University College London The patient identification process is led by the Trent Cancer Registry (TrCR) working in partnership with the West Midlands Cancer Intelligence Unit and the Eastern Cancer Registration and Information Centre. The team at TrCR will contact GPs of identified patients who will then forward the invitation to participate in this study to the individual patient. The GP will send the signed information pack to the selected patients and return a pre-stamped acknowledgment slip to TrCR informing them whether the patient pack was sent on. There will be no contact between patients and cancer registries.

Patients willing to take part in the study will return their signed consent form and completed questionnaire to the academic Module 4 study team at University College London. The academic team will not have access to any patient level information unless the patient has consented to take part in this study. After obtaining consent from the patients the primary and specialist care questionnaire will be sent to GP and consultants to obtain information on diagnosis and treatment.

  • Prof Usha Menon (Co-chair module 4 and Lead England)
  • Dr Evangelia-Ourania Fourkala (Co-ordinator)
  • Dr Jatinderpal Kalsi
  • Mr Robert Liston
  • Mr Rakshit Desai
Trent Cancer Registry

Mr Hales Jack
Ms Thackeray Alexandra
Mr David Meechan


Programme Board:

Mike Richards – England
Todd Harper, Nicola Quin, Bob Thomas - Australia (Victoria)
David Currow - Australia (New South Wales)
Heather Bryant, Michael Sherar, Linda Rabeneck - Canada
Søren Brostrøm, Ole Andersen - Denmark
Anna Gavin - Northern Ireland
Stein Kaasa  - Norway
Aileen Keel (Scotland)
Gunilla Gunnarsson - Sweden
Jane Hanson – Wales

A mixture of government boies and cancer charities in the participating countries are funding the study. CR UK is overseeing study management. The England arm of module 4 is funded by the Department of Health for England with the UCL team receiving additional support from the charity Eve Appeal.

Prof Peter Vedsted (co-chair Module 4) (Denmark)
Prof David Weller (co-chair Module 4), Chantelle Anandan (Scotland)
Dr Vicky White - Australia (Victoria)
Dr Jane Young - Australia (New South Wales)
Ms Susan Fekete – Canada (Canadian Partnership against Cancer)
Dr Juanita Hatcher, Dr Peter Craighead - Canada (Alberta)
Dr Andy Coldman, Dr Mark Elwood, Dr Ivo Olivotto, Coleen McGahan- Canada (British Columbia)
Prof Dhali Dhaliwal, Dr Donna Turner, Dr Sue Bates, Breann Hawryluk- Canada (Manitoba)
Prof Eva Grunfeld, Dr Andriana Barisic - Canada (Ontario)
Dr Jackie Boylan, Mr Conan Donnelly - Northern Ireland
Dr Anne Kari Knudsen, Dr Sigrun Saur Almberg – Norway
Prof Mats Lambe, Dr Annette Wigertz, Dr Martin Malmberg - Sweden
Prof Richard Neal – Wales

CRUK Management team

Catherine Foot
Dr Martine Bomb
Samantha Harrison