DATA-CAN is a UK-wide partnership that aims to unlock the power of health data to improve cancer care.
One in two people will get cancer during their lifetime. Every year, almost 400,000 new cases are diagnosed in the UK, and cancer costs the NHS £7 billion annually. However, research has shown that using health data more effectively can help drive the development of new cancer treatments, therapies and diagnostic services and improve cancer survival rates.
Health data collected by the NHS and other organisations are not always quick and easy for researchers to find, access and analyse. DATA-CAN works in partnership with data custodians in universities, charities, industry and NHS organisations to make high-quality health data more accessible for cancer researchers, clinicians and other health professionals. The aim is to make it easier to conduct research into new treatments, identify opportunities for earlier diagnosis, give patients faster access to clinical trials and create new investment in UK healthcare.
DATA-CAN’s vision is to unlock the power of health data to improve cancer care by:
- Making high-quality health data more accessible for cancer researchers, clinicians and other health professionals via the Health Data Research Innovation Gateway
- Connecting data from across the UK and making it easier to find and use, facilitating research into new diagnostics, treatments and improvements in care and giving patients faster access to clinical trials
- Collecting and using real-time cancer data to respond to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and develop informed solutions to help save lives in the long term
- Working with patients, the public and health professionals to make sure that data is used transparently and responsibly, and that the benefits are returned to the NHS and the wider UK community.