Surveillance in people at high risk of pancreatic cancer – A guide for Australian Primary Care Practitioners

Cancer Australia invites you to have your say on draft clinical guidance for surveillance in people at high risk of pancreatic cancer.

Cancer Australia has engaged the University of Queensland to lead the development of the clinical guidance. It aims to help identify people at high risk of pancreatic cancer and strengthen approaches to early detection.

The development of the clinical guidance is a key priority of the agency's work to progress the implementation of the National Pancreatic Cancer Roadmap (the Roadmap).

The Roadmap was released in March 2022 and identifies 33 key priority areas and 60 strategies across the care continuum for collective action to 2027. Cancer Australia is progressing five key implementation priorities from the Roadmap to improve the early detection, management and care of people with pancreatic cancer. More information on the Roadmap is available here.

Background and User Guide

The purpose of this clinical resource is to provide core principles and practice points for general practitioners (GPs) regarding surveillance in:

  1. people who have a family history or pathogenic germline variant (gene mutation) that puts them at high risk of developing pancreatic adenocarcinoma (high-risk individuals; HRIs); and

  1. people with a cystic lesion of the pancreas discovered incidentally. The aims are to help GPs identify patients who would be classified as a HRI and provide advice regarding referrals for possible surveillance.

The symptoms of pancreatic cancer are non-specific and the disease is often diagnosed late, resulting in advanced disease and a lack of treatment options. There are some people who are at high risk of developing pancreatic cancer for different reasons (I.e. family history, genetic factors).

The development of the clinical guidance is part of a broader work package Cancer Australia has commissioned the University of Queensland to deliver. Other outputs will include a decision support tool with clinical guidance for investigating the pancreas in people with symptoms that suggest they may have pancreatic cancer, a framework to support possible future risk-stratified surveillance in the general population, educational materials, and implementation plans.

Please note: the clinical guidancebeing shared for public consultation are draft and for the purpose of seeking stakeholder review and input. Health professionals will need to consider the final clinical guidance in the context of their healthcare delivery service and the patients' individual needs.

Why your views matter

Cancer Australia is undertaking a broad consultation process to ensure all relevant stakeholders have the opportunity for input. You are invited to have your say.

Feedback is welcome from members of the public, people with pancreatic cancer and their family and carers. We are keen to hear the views of people from all geographic locations, age groups, ethnic and cultural backgrounds.

Canvassing the views of the sector will be critical. This includes but is not limited to health professionals, professional colleges, consumer organisations, researchers, cancer organisations, funders, peak bodies and other organisations across the non-government and government sectors.

How to have your say

You can choose to have your say in two ways through the survey:

1. Provide free text responses to the survey prompts (1500 Character limit); and/or

2. Download and provide comments in the document, then upload the document.

You will need to complete the survey to submit your response.

How we will use your responses

Survey responses and written submissions will be used to inform the development of the clinical guidance.

Submissions will close on Wednesday, 14 February 2024.

Questions and assistance

If you have any questions about this consultation process, or if you have any technical issues using the Engagement Hub, please contact

The survey is now closed. Thanks for participating.