Ruth Board

Dr Ruth Board, Consultant Oncologist from Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, is the Chair of the Lancashire & South Cumbria Network Acute Oncology Group.   


The role and purpose of the Network Acute Oncology Group (NAOG) is to improve the experience and outcomes of cancer care for Acute Oncology patients in Lancashire & South Cumbria.

Acute Oncology patients are those deemed to be:

  • Patients potentially suffering from the acute complications of cancer treatment. The emphasis, where an emphasis has to be made, will be on non-surgical treatment, since guidelines and care pathways concerning acute post-operative emergencies would normally be well established and would supersede any others.
  • Patients potentially suffering from certain emergencies caused by the disease process itself, whether the primary site is known, unknown or presumed. The emphasis, again, for similar reasons to those above, will be on such emergencies which require non-surgical treatment. A notable exception to this is the inclusion of arrangements for dealing with metastatic spinal cord compression, which may need initial treatment with either surgery or radiotherapy.

This involves consideration of strategies and plans for service improvement and service development across the patient pathway, incorporating all aspects of care at appropriate stages of the patient's journey. The aim is to achieve the best possible outcomes and best quality of life for all patients who use Acute Oncology services within the Network.

The Network Acute Oncology Group:

  • Is the Network's primary source of clinical opinion on issues relating to Acute Oncology Services for the Network
  • Is the Group with corporate responsibility for co-ordination and consistency across the Network for policy, practice guidelines, audit, research and service improvement relating to Acute Oncology Services.
  • Will consult with the relevant cross-cutting Network groups on issues involving chemotherapy, cancer imaging, histopathology and laboratory investigation and specialist palliative care; and with the Head of Service on issues involving radiotherapy.

Members of the NAOG will be responsible for feeding back information/decisions from the NAOG to their clinical and managerial colleagues.