Statewide survivorship care work

The Australian Cancer Survivorship Centre (ACSC) have led multiple statewide, large-scale funded survivorship care projects, with the broad aim of improving cancer survivorship care across Victoria. This page describes various projects that the ACSC has led after receiving external funding. This page also includes information about the Victorian Cancer Survivorship Program (VCSP). 

Victorian Statewide Collaboration to Improve Cancer Survivorship Care 2022-2024

The ACSC and the Victorian Integrated Cancer Services (VICS) partnered to deliver the Victorian Statewide Collaboration to Improve Cancer Survivorship Care project, from April 2022 to March 24. Funded by the VICS, this project aimed to implement a statewide approach to survivorship care, utilising an experience-based co-design approach.

There were three key objectives:

  1. Put the Victorian Quality Cancer Survivorship Care Policy in place at Victorian public hospitals
  2. Co-design and implement improved survivorship models of care
  3. Improve VICS and member services’ confidence, capacity and capability around survivorship care. 

The Executive Summary from the final project report highlights key project achievements, learnings and recommendations.

Implementing survivorship quality improvement initiatives

Objective 2 of this project involved co-designing and implementing survivorship care models. This included co-design workshops with consumers and health professionals to develop initiatives to improve the use of survivorship care plans and needs assessment for patients and carers following their initial cancer treatment. Following the workshops, ACSC and the VICS collaborated to refine and finalise the improvement initiatives.

For adult health services, three improvement initiatives were developed:

  1. Needs assessment
  2. Survivorship care planning
  3. Combined delivery of needs assessment and survivorship care plans

An information resource was also developed for each initiative to:

  • Support health professionals to discuss with patients the concept and usefulness of needs assessment and survivorship care plans in the post-treatment phase.
  • Support patients to access quality information and support services following treatment by providing links to resources and services such as the ACSC, Cancer Council and local services. The resource can be tailored by health services to include information on local services available in their region.

The details of these initiatives and associated resources that supported initiative delivery are compiled in an Implementation Toolkit. The Toolkit is designed to be used by service improvement staff and health services planning to undertake survivorship quality improvement work related to needs assessment and/or survivorship care plans.

Whilst these resources were developed for the Statewide Collaboration project, the Toolkit includes resources to support quality improvement planning and preparation which can also be used for other survivorship quality improvement work. 

Improving confidence, capacity and capability around survivorship care

To support Objective 3 of this project - improve VICS and member services’ confidence, capacity and capability around survivorship care, education materials were developed and existing professional development opportunities promoted to all staff.

To support health professionals to navigate and access the various survivorship education resources available, a Survivorship Orientation Package was developed. The ACSC designed this resource to orient new health service staff to survivorship education, events, professional development and key resources for health professionals and cancer survivors.

 Embed and Spread Optimal Cancer Survivorship Care across Victoria 2020-2022 

The information below provides a summary of activity and results of the Embed and spread optimal cancer survivorship care across Victoria (Embed and spread) project. This project was funded by the Victorian Government from 2020 – 2022 and incorporated Project 1: Virtual roadshow and baseline survey, and Project 2: Expansion of 

Project 1: Virtual roadshow and baseline survey (September 2020 – March 2022) 

  • Delivered webinars on cancer survivorship care to 20 Victorian health services 

  • Collected baseline data on cancer survivorship care practices from 20 health services and provided a summary report with recommendations to enhance care 

  • Supported 7 services to implement a survivorship quality improvement initiative 

  • Collected follow-up data to evaluate project impact 

The Victorian Survivorship Care Data Report 2022 provides de-identified comparative statewide data of the 20 Victorian health services that participated in the baseline site survey, as part of the Embed and spread project. The report includes data on: 

  • Presence of a survivorship care policy 

  • Models of survivorship care 

  • Use of survivorship care plans 

  • Information provision 

  • Use of needs assessment tools  

  • Availability of services to support survivorship issues 

  • Collection of survivorship outcome data 

  • Strengths and challenges with the provision of survivorship care 

Project 2: Expansion of (February 2021 – December 2021) 

Expanded from 3 to 6 cancer types, now available for: 

  • Early-stage breast cancer
  • Early-stage bowel cancer 
  • Localised prostate cancer 
  • Early-stage melanoma 
  • Uterine cancer (endometrial) 
  • Non-Hodgkin lymphoma (diffuse large B-cell)   

Victorian Cancer Survivorship Program 

The VCSP grants scheme represents a significant investment by the Department of Health that has supported a diverse program of survivorship activity in Victoria since 2011. 

The first phase of VCSP (2011-2014) funded six pilot projects, with a focus on trialling collaborative models of care across acute, primary and community care sectors. 

In 2016, an evaluation of VCSP I was undertaken. 

To support consistent reporting from funded projects, an evaluation and outcomes framework was developed in 2016. 

Building on the success of VCSP, the second phase (2016-2019) funded 24 projects with a focus on six objectives: implement models of post-treatment care shared across acute and primary care; create effective partnerships and capacity building; improve experiences in the post-treatment phase; contribute to the survivorship evidence base; understand the needs of specific groups; and evaluate all models with reference to the evaluation and outcomes framework. 

Evaluation of the Victorian Cancer Survivorship Program Phase II 

In 2019, a whole program evaluation of VCSP II was undertaken, which considered the VCSP II evaluation and outcomes framework and involved a broad range of stakeholders. The bulk of this was done externally by Alison Coughlan, following a tender process. The evaluation has resulted in two reports that cover the work of the VCSP II projects, up to May 2019: 

This report provides key evaluation findings and recommendations. It includes some background and context for VCSP II, including the lessons learned from VCSP I that shaped VCSP II design. The key evaluation findings are mapped to the six overarching objectives of VCSP II. 

For more information on VCSP, contact the ACSC at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit the Department of Health website.