dr. C.W. (Charles) Helsper

dr. C.W. (Charles) Helsper

Associate Professor
dr. C.W. (Charles) Helsper
  • Julius Center, dept. General Practice & Nursing Science

Research Programs

Strategic Program Cancer



Main focus


Research coordinator: oncology in primary care - research projects;

Early diagnosis;

  • Dickens: duration of the cancer diagnostic pathway & potential to improve
  • Dickens II: Impact of COVID on the diagnostic pathway for cancer 
  • ABE: case finding of increased cancer risk - ovarian cancer
  • Risk perception and policy among GPs in different stages of their career


Shared decision making (SDM)

  • GRIP - the effects of SDM support by GPs after a cancer diagnosis
  • Choose Wisely -  optimal shared decision making support by the GP
  • Meaningful choice - role of the GP in hospital choice 


Structured primary care guidance during and after treatment

  • GRIP I (RCT) - Effects of strutured primary care guidance during cancer treatment
  • GRIP II - Optimal implementation of strutured primary care guidance during cancer treatment
  • Blanket (RCT) - Effects of treatment of fear of cancer recurrence in primary care



Lecturer at GP-specialty training and Utrecht University 

  • Evidence Based Medicine in clinical pratice
  • Primary care oncology
  • Teach the teachrer programs




  • MD: with a background in General practice (AIOTHO)
  • PhD: casefinding strategies for hepatitis C infection
  • MSc: Clinical Epidemiology



Biographical Sketch

Charles Helsper was born on the 9th of March 1980 in Pullman Washington (USA). After graduating from the Atheneum at the ‘Bisschop Bekkers College’ in Eindhoven and the first year of Health Sciences at Maastricht University, he studied Medicine at Utrecht University. During these studies he developed an interest for both the practice and research of primary care and prevention.

To put this interest into practice he combined the GP-specialty training with a PhD programme at the Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care at the Utrecht Medical Center. His PhD programme addressed identification strategies for hepatitis C infection from a primary care point of view.

During this combined programme he also successfully finished a Prestige Master in Epidemiology, worked as a lecturer at the GP specialty training, at Utrecht University and as an invited lecturer at the Centre for Research in Evidence-Based Practice at Bond University (Australia).

Currently he is working as a senior researcher at the Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, with a focus on cancer in primary care. In addition, he works at the Utrecht GP specialty training and Utrecht University, with a main focus on improving the use and education of scientific evidence in primary care practice.




Side Activities

THINC.  Advisor - The Health Care Innovation Centre

THINC (The Healthcare Innovation Center)., as part of the UMC Utrecht Julius Center, contributes to the continuous development of scientific knowledge at the service of healthcare innovation. We combine state of the art scientific expertise in the fields of HTA (Health Technology Assessment), clinical epidemiology, public health, ethics, primary care and implementation. From the early innovation stages THINC can inform innovators on the anticipated working mechanism (causal pathways), usability, validity and (cost-effectiveness). THINC aims at a broad range of healthcare innovations including medical technology, devices, mHealth, eHealth and care pathways.   

Fellowship and Awards

- SBOH academiseringsprijs - artikel: Primary care management of women with breast cancer-related concerns-a dynamic cohort study using a network database. Sollie A, Helsper CW, Ader RJ, Ausems MG, van der Wouden JC, Numans ME. Eur J Cancer Care (Engl). 2016 Nov;25(6):1005-1014


- Academic GP Award 2012. Utrechtse prijs academische huisartsgeneeskunde. Universitair medisch centrum Utrecht


- Future Research Star Award 2010. European Society for Primary Care Gastroenterology

Research Output (48)

Impact of the COVID-19 Outbreak—Delayed Referral of Colorectal and Lung Cancer in Primary Care:A National Retrospective Cohort Study

Helsper Charles W., Van Gils Carla H., Van Erp Nicole F., Siepman van den Berg Marinde F.R., Rogouti Omar, Van Asselt Kristel M., Maarsingh Otto R., Muris Jean, Brandenbarg Daan, Siesling Sabine, De Wit Niek J., Grant Matthew P., 25 Feb 2023, In: Cancers. 15

The Impact of the COVID Pandemic on the Incidence of Presentations with Cancer-Related Symptoms in Primary Care

Grant Matthew P, Helsper Charles W, Stellato Rebecca, van Erp Nicole, van Asselt Kristel M, Slottje Pauline, Muris Jean, Brandenbarg Daan, de Wit Niek J, van Gils Carla H 1 Nov 2022, In: Cancers. 14 , p. 1-12

Mental Health Morbidities and Time to Cancer Diagnosis Among Adults With Colon Cancer in England

Benitez Majano Sara, Lyratzopoulos Georgios, de Wit Niek J, White Becky, Rachet Bernard, Helsper Charles, Usher-Smith Juliet, Renzi Cristina 31 Oct 2022, In: JAMA network open. 5 , p. 1-15

Long-COVID and long-term cancer survivorship-Shared lessons and opportunities

Harada Taku, Schmitz Kathryn, Helsper Charles W, Campbell Grace, Nekhlyudov Larissa 24 Sep 2022, In: European Journal of Cancer Care. 31

The impact of the COVID pandemic on cancer diagnosis in general practice in The Netherlands

Grant Matthew, van Gils Carla H., van Erp Nicole, van Asselt Kristel M., Brandenbarg Daan, Muris Jean W. M., de Wit NJ, Helsper CW 30 Jun 2022,

The impact of the COVID pandemic on the incidence of cancer-related symptoms in general practice

Grant Matthew, van Gils Carla H., van Erp Nicole, van Asselt Kristel M., Brandenbarg Daan, Muris J.W.M., de Wit NJ, Helsper CW 30 Jun 2022,

Effects of structured involvement of the primary care team versus standard care after a cancer diagnosis on patient satisfaction and healthcare use:the GRIP randomised controlled trial

Perfors I. A.A., Helsper C. W., Noteboom E. A., Visserman E. A., van Dorst E. B.L., van Dalen T., Verhagen M. A.M.T., Witkamp A. J., Koelemij R., Flinterman A. E., Pruissen-Peeters K. A.B.M., Schramel F. M.N.H., van Rens M. T.M., Ernst M. F., Moons L. M.G., van der Wall E., de Wit N. J., May A. M. 4 Jun 2022, In: BMC Primary Care. 23 , p. 1-14

What is the prevalence of fear of cancer recurrence in cancer survivors and patients?:A systematic review and individual participant data meta-analysis

Luigjes-Huizer Yvonne L., Tauber Nina M., Humphris Gerry, Kasparian Nadine A., Lam Wendy W.T., Lebel Sophie, Simard Sébastien, Smith Allan Ben, Zachariae Robert, Afiyanti Yati, Bell Katy J.L., Custers José A.E., de Wit Niek J., Fisher Peter L., Galica Jacqueline, Garland Sheila N., Helsper Charles W., Jeppesen Mette M., Liu Jianlin, Mititelu Roxana, Monninkhof Evelyn M., Russell Lahiru, Savard Josée, Speckens Anne E.M., van Helmondt Sanne J., Vatandoust Sina, Zdenkowski Nicholas, van der Lee Marije L. 2022, In: Psycho-Oncology. 31 , p. 879-892 14 p.

Need for a primary care-based intervention for fear of cancer recurrence: conclusions from the BLANKET trial

Luigjes-Huizer Yvonne, Helsper CW, Gerrits Marloes, de Wit NJ, van der Lee Marije 2022, In: Journal of Psychosocial Oncology Research and Practice. 4

Patients' preferred and perceived level of involvement in decision making for cancer treatment:A systematic review

Noteboom Eveline A., May Anne M., van der Wall Elsken, de Wit Niek J., Helsper Charles W. 28 Jun 2021, In: Psycho-Oncology. 30 , p. 1663-1679 17 p.

All research output

Thank you for your review!

Has this information helped you?

Please tell us why, so that we can improve our website.

Working at UMC Utrecht





Practical maakt gebruik van cookies

Deze website maakt gebruik van cookies Deze website toont video’s van o.a. YouTube. Dergelijke partijen plaatsen cookies (third party cookies). Als u deze cookies niet wilt kunt u dat hier aangeven. Wij plaatsen zelf ook cookies om onze site te verbeteren.

Lees meer over het cookiebeleid

Akkoord Nee, liever niet