On Saturday 9 October, the Daily Mail ran a piece from One Cancer Voice urging the government to commit much-needed funding to improve and maintain cancer services. Action Kidney Cancer was one of the 47 cancer charities lobbying for this change.
COVID-19 has impacted cancer services and halted progress, delaying both diagnosis and treatment. Although most services are back to pre-COVID levels there is a growing backlog of patients yet to be diagnosed with cancer. These delays mean more patients will have advanced cancer with more severe symptoms and complications, potentially lowering their quality of life and life expectancy.
One Cancer Voice is calling on the governments in all four UK nations to direct resources towards clearing the cancer backlog quickly and continue progress to deliver better treatments and services for cancer patients.
The statement from One Cancer Voice maps out a nine-step plan to deliver world-class cancer services whilst tackling the cancer backlog caused by COVID-19. It urges UK governments and NHS leaders to:
- Direct resources to clear the cancer backlog caused by COVID-19 as quickly as possible
- Continue to encourage people with signs and symptoms of cancer to seek help from their GP
- Expand the number of staff in key cancer professions
- Drive earlier and faster diagnosis
- Ensure personalised care and support for all
- Strengthen the UK’s medical R&D base to accelerate improvements in cancer outcomes
- Resource high-quality end of life care
- Be bolder in measures to prevent cancer
- Reduce inequalities in cancer outcomes