CASCADE: Co-design of Acute Oncology Standardised Competence Assessment Documents and their Evaluation

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People with cancer, treated for cancer or have been recently treated for cancer are at a higher risk of becoming rapidly unwell. Oncological emergencies are categorised into three types of Acute Oncology (AO) indication but can include a wide variety of clinical concerns.


Every hospital Trust in England with an emergency department is required to have a robust acute oncology (AO) team, to promote safety and quality in unplanned cancer care.

Patients will also interact with healthcare professionals from all workforce groups throughout their cancer journey It is, therefore, vital that all NHS staff receive standardised education and training(appropriate to their role) about AO regardless of where they work, their level of practice and their role. 

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About the Project

The project aims to develop a knowledgeable and skilled UK workforce for all health professionals that treat and care for patients with an acute oncology indication to ensure that cancer services are fit for purpose and optimise safe outcomes for patients with cancer. The passport aims are:

•Improve patient safety by raising awareness of oncology emergencies

•Enhance communication and collaboration throughout patient pathways

•Deliver multi-disciplinary education across the four nations.


Throughout the first phase of the project we have developed a series of multidisciplinary competence assessment passports across four levels of practice. The passports map to the UKONS Acute Oncology Knowledge and Skills Guidance as an underpinning educational framework which you can read here

You can read our end of phase 1 report via the GM Cancer Alliance Workforce and Education page here

Current Updates

We’ve recently completed a four nations pilot of the Passport documents across 26 NHS organisations, 3 universities and across primary care. The results of this evaluation are being written up for publication but the data has shown that the AO passports were found to be relevant, pitched at the right level and an appropriate measure for assessing AO knowledge and skills competencies. 

The project team are pleased to be presenting project findings at a number of conferences this year, including at the Greater Manchester Cancer Conference 2024. 

The Passports will be launched at the UK Oncology Forum on the 13th June 2024 and available to access via the UKONS website. The digital Level 1 Passport developed in collaboration with Macmillan Cancer Support is already live and can be accessed for free via the Macmillan Learning Hub.

Contact Gina Madera, Acute Education Project Manager at for more information about the project or launch information

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UK Oncology Nursing Society AOS Resources:

UK Oncology Nursing Society Initial Management Guidelines:

UKONS | Acute Oncology Initial Management Guidelines (

UK Acute Oncology Society Information Hub:

Macmillan Learning & Communications Hub:

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