My response to concerns about long wait times for cancer care and NHS funding pressures
Thank you for contacting me about cancer treatments and NHS funding.
I share your view that it is urgent we reduce the backlog of cancer care that built up during and since the pandemic
The Chancellor’s spending commitments at the Autumn Statement, making available £8 billion of funding for the NHS and adult social care in England in 2024-25 is welcome news, particularly for those waiting for tests and treatments and their families.
The additional £3.3 billion in 2023-24 and 2024-25 will we hope enable rapid action to improve emergency, elective and primary care performance. This will happen alongside the introduction of reforms to support the workforce and improve performance across the health system over the longer term.
Additionally, a 10-Year Cancer Plan is currently being developed with the ambition that Britain becomes the best country in Europe for cancer care. The plan allows for a renewed focus on innovative treatments, boosting the cancer workforce, and preventing more cancers from occurring and earlier diagnosis which we know improves outcomes.#
The input of patient groups like Macmillan, Pancreatic Cancer UK and Cancer Research will have been invaluable to help develop the 10 Year Cancer Plan by highlighting the lived experience of people with cancer.
The unprecedented circumstances as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic helped highlight how incredibly stretched and under pressure is our NHS overall. I agree that it is vital every possible step is taken to protect this vital service which is intrinsic to the wellbeing of our nation.
Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.