Molecular Imaging Collaborative Network

Helping close the gap in cancer survivorship through enhanced diagnostics

The Molecular Imaging Collaborative Network (MICN), led by Alliance Medical, is delivering PET-CT services to 60% of England under a new National Contract.  

The contract brings local access to patients across the country to these cutting-edge diagnostics, addressing the historic inequalities and variations in access.

PET-CT is one of the most powerful imaging tools available to clinicians today in the diagnosis and staging of cancer and increasingly other conditions such as cardiac and neurological diseases.  Since 2008, the NHS has focused on increasing access to this important modality, however, the constant demand for local level capacity has resulted in gaps in the service.   In some areas there is still a substantial gap between the number of patients who would be expected to receive a scan and those who actually do – and the UK lags behind Europe in terms of access to PET-CT scans.   This is one of the reasons why people with cancer are typically diagnosed later than in many European countries – and that our 5-year survival rates are just 54% compared with 67% on average in many developed European healthcare systems.


As part of the MICN partnership, Alliance Medical is currently upgrading the national PET-CT infrastructure with new static scanners replacing mobile units and 5 completely new sites.

98% of people will be within a one-hour drive of a static scanner by February 2016 (subject to planning)

Improved local access to a new generation of PET-CT scanners, together with enhanced processes, will contribute to even earlier and more accurate diagnoses – and increased survivorship.  At the same time, the travel time and distance is reduced for many patients.

"We should set ourselves the achievable target of raising our cancer survival rates to match the very best in Europe. The key is faster diagnosis."

Professor Sir Bruce Keogh
National Medical Director, NHS England Backs Cancer Campaign