NCCP Key Achievements





  • Introduction of extracranial stereotactic radiotherapy service
  • Publication of Oncology Medication Safety Review Report
  • Completion of evidence-based Breast and Prostate Cancer Guidelines
  • Developed a three day cancer education programme for non specialist oncology nurses in acute care. This course covers cancer prevention, referral and patient pathway, survivorship and post-acute care including palliative care. 
  • Submission paper to the Department of Health which contributed to the introduction of the Public Health ( Sunbeds) Act 2014. Participated on the Department of Health's Sunbeds Communications Group to promote the dangers associated with sunbed use. click Sunbeds Act 2014 for more information 


  • Commenced the development of national protocols for a range of cancer drugs
  • Extended the provision of brachytherapy from one to three centres nationally
  • Breast Check completed the 2nd round of national screening
  • Cervical Check completed the 2nd round of national screening
  • Introduction of intracranial stereotactic radiotherapy service
  • Evaluation of the Community Oncology Nursing Programme
  • Establishment of an annual nursing grant with the Health Research Board enabling nurses to carry out research in cancer care


  • CervicalCheck introduced HPV testing for women treated at colposcopy
  • Commencement of BowelCheck, the national screening programme for colorectal cancer
  • Secured funding for newly approved haematology and medical oncology drugs, and funding to address the budgetary pressure associated with increased costs of oncology drugs already approved
  • Publication of "A Strategy and Educational Framework for Nurses Caring for People With Cancer in Ireland": National Cancer Control Programme in partnership with the HSE Office of the Nursing and Midwifery Services Director
  • Publication of A Strategy and Educational Framework for Nurses Caring for People With Cancer in Ireland in partnership with the HSE Office of the Nursing and Midwifery Services Director


  • Developed a national programme for oesophageal cancer in one national centre with three satellites
  • Opened new radiation oncology units at Beaumont Hospital and St. James’ Hospital Dublin


  • CervicalCheck completed first round of cervical screening programme
  • BreastCheck completed first round of screening in South and West
  • Centralisation of all lung cancer surgery in four designated cancer  centres
  • Developed a single national programme for the management of brain and other central nervous system tumours operating on two sites


  • Established a national centre for pancreatic cancer operating on two sites


  • Developed electronic cancer referral for breast, prostate and lung cancer in collaboration with a broad range of stakeholders. This is now being extended to include pigmented lesion referral as part of the national electronic referral project. 


  • Developed and implemented a training programme for nurses who work in primary care. This course covers cancer prevention, referral and patient assessment, treatment and post-acute care
  • Provided information sessions to Primary Care (GP and practice nurse) for its screening and symptomatic services;  provided free training programmes for smear-takers as part of its Cervical-check programme


  • Developed a Community Oncology Nurse Programme, a skills-based programme to integrate medical oncology care between acute hospital and community settings. This programme has been delivered in four out of the six hospital groups. 
  • A Policy, Procedure and Resource book was developed to give guidance to nurses to meet the needs of these patients. click here for publication. 
  • Collaboration with the HSE Tobacco Control Implementation Framework group, including e-learning in smoking cessation for GPs and allied health professionals and development of a national pharmacotherapy smoking cessation algorithm. 
  • Developed educational materials for health professionals, including health & neck cancer referral, lymphoedema prevention, breast follow up and smoking cessation. 


  • Developed national GP referral guidelines and standard referral forms for breast, lung, and prostate cancers, and pigmented lesions


  • Establishment of  Rapid Access Clinics for patients strongly suspected of having prostate cancer or lung cancer in all eight designated cancer centres


  • Reorganisation of  symptomatic breast cancer diagnostic and surgical services into the eight cancer centres (with a satellite from the Galway Cancer Centre at Letterkenny General Hospital)


  • The NCCP is established