Our Myeloma Early Diagnosis Programme brings together leading experts to discuss where delays might happen, where improvements can be made and how we can increase education around myeloma diagnosis.
Myeloma UK Early Diagnosis Steering Committee
The Myeloma UK Early Diagnosis Steering Committee is a panel of experts dedicated to identifying the major issues preventing early diagnosis and developing projects to tackle some of these issues. The Steering Committee includes haematologists, GPs, clinical and academic researchers, a nurse and a patient representative, plus guest speakers to contribute to specific themes.
Key activities of the committee include:
- Increasing national awareness on the causes of delays in diagnosis and lobbying for improvements alongside our patient advocacy team
- Investigating early markers of myeloma and the possibility of using artificial intelligence to alert GPs
- Establishing and facilitating work on specific issues relating to diagnosis, such as initiating an MGUS working group and a laboratory best practice working group
Primary care GP engagement and education
GPs are the first point of contact for most myeloma patients. Our aim is to educate and engage with GPs and other healthcare professionals to raise awareness of the signs and symptoms of myeloma. Catching myeloma early means your GP can quickly refer you to a haematology specialist.
Here are some of the ways we help GPs understand myeloma:
- The Myeloma Diagnosis Pathway: a quick reference tool for healthcare professionals. If you would like to get involved in distributing these to your local GP surgery, order a copy by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or download here
- Educational materials to highlight the key signs and symptoms of myeloma, such as our myeloma e-learning module produced in collaboration with the Royal College of General Practitioners and online seminars
- Organising GP events with a focus on myeloma and exhibiting at national GP conferences to raise awareness
Secondary care education for non-haematology specialists
If your GP suspects myeloma, they will refer you to a haematologist for further testing. However, if the early signs are not picked up, you may be referred to another hospital department. Experiencing these delays in diagnosis can lead to feelings of anxiety and frustration. This is where our secondary care engagement and education becomes important.
Here are some of the ways we engage with secondary care departments:
- Promoting Myeloma Grand Round Events in hospitals nationwide: these events are designed to enable haematology departments to highlight key signs and symptoms that other secondary care specialists should look out for
- Developing ideas for educational materials that can be distributed among hospital departments