FIT in Secondary Care: north east London pilot

A project to promote the use of Faecal Immunochemical Testing (FIT) in hospital emergency departments is being trialled within north east London.

Whilst FIT was introduced for use in primary care for symptomatic patients in2019, it’s not currently routinely available in secondary care.  The aim of the project is to support the earlier diagnosis of patients with lower gastrointestinal (GI) red flag symptoms indicative of possible bowel cancer.

The pilot project will improve hospital clinicians’ access to FIT to allow testing of appropriate patients who present in urgent care departments in hospitals. The aim is to develop and test pathways incorporating FIT in secondary care to improve the clinical evaluation and triage of patients for investigation of lower GI disease, identify low risk symptomatic patients to determine need for endoscopy or other investigation and, ultimately, reduce time to diagnosis.

The pilot project is expected to run for between six to eight months across three sites in north east London. These are: the Urgent Care Departments at Whipps Cross Hospital and Queen’s Hospital (the urgent care setting at Queen’s Hospital is also known as the Partnership of East London Cooperatives (PELC)). The work will be supported by senior clinical ED champions, colo-rectal cancer clinical specialists and dedicated navigators.

The project is funded by the NHS England National Cancer Team and delivered by our team at TCST.

In the right-hand sidebar, you’ll find some useful resources relating to the FIT pilot.