Frequently Asked Questions

One of my centre’s staff members is actively involved in the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission. To what extent are they permitted to be part of the application process?

To successfully complete the application form, centres are advised to pick the staff members best positioned to give an accurate reflection of each part of the centre’s services, regardless of their work on the mission. The assessment process has been designed in such a way that assessors cannot review their own application or be present during the shortlisting of centres.

My centre provides a specialist service (e.g. proton beam); many of our patients begin their diagnostic and surgical service elsewhere before coming to our service. Will this be accurately reflected in the patient feedback forms?

When patients fill in the ‘Improving Brain Tumour Care’ surveys, they are given a choice of six different surveys which cover different parts of the patient journey (pre-diagnosis, diagnosis & next steps, neurosurgery, radiotherapy & chemotherapy, living with a brain tumour and palliative and end of life care).  When filling in the surveys, patients are asked to indicate what hospital they attended to receive their service and can indicate different centres for the different stages/surveys.

The application form asks for supporting evidence for several questions (i.e. audit data). Does my centre need to attach the supporting evidence with the application form?

Centres do not need to attach any supporting evidence with the application form but are advised to have the supporting evidence available in the case that the committee has further questions and requests access to the supporting evidence.

The COVID-19 pandemic has had significant impact on our services (e.g. delays in surgeries, changes to how patients are seen) which do not reflect the usual standards of our service. Will this impact the chances of my centre obtaining designation?

If you feel certain services (e.g., waiting times) were significantly impacted by COVID-19 and do not accurately represent your service, please feel free indicate both the current standards (as impacted by the pandemic) as well as your usual standards.

I have comments or queries about the standards of excellence against which the centres are assessed. Can I comment or provide additional expertise on the standards?

The standards of excellence have been designed by the TJ Centre committee which consists of a broad range of clinicians, allied health professionals and academics from a wide range of institutions and hospitals across the country in addition to patients.  We strive to continuously improve our work and welcome thoughts or comments on the standards. Any comments or queries can be discussed with the TJBCM central team during the final follow-up calls and, subject to review, may be incorporated into the second round of applications.

My centre works with both NHS and academic labs. Should I include the work carried out by the academic lab in the application form?

Yes. Please include any brain tumour related lab-work in section five of the application form as the section applies to all brain tumour science, including basic, applied and clinical science.

If you have any further queries, please contact: camille@tessajowellfoundation.org.uk