Monday, 7 July 2014

Last week I attended the Cancer Research UK Showcase...

Last week I attended the Cancer Research UK Showcase which was both an interesting and enlightening experience. Cancer Research UK aims to accelerate their progress so that within 20 years 3 in 4 people will survive cancer, an ambitious target they believe they can achieve. They aim to do this by diagnosing cancer earlier, increasing focus on specific cancers whose survival rates lag behind others, and developing new targeted treatments and engaging patients in their fight against cancer.

Here in Hyndburn we currently have 2,119 cancer cases diagnosed per year, an obviously distressing figure, however Cancer Research UK did provide me with some positives concerning our constituency to keep in mind moving forward. Here in Hyndburn more patients are referred urgently to a specialist than the national average, 96.2% of patients see a specialist within 2 weeks of diagnosed. The referral time for treatment is also above the national average here in Hyndburn with 85.9% of patients receiving treatment within 62 days of an urgent GP referral.

Most importantly for me, a great statistic to see is the fact 83.6% of patients in East Lancashire Hospitals said that staff did everything possible to control their side effects of radiotherapy during their patient experience. This is 4.6% higher than the national average and is great to see care is being taken in these circumstances when care is needed most. I’m glad to see hospitals in Hyndburn providing services above the national average but as always these statistics can be improved.

Notable statistics that could be improved include the waiting time for radiotherapy. Here in East Lancashire the proportion of patients receiving radiotherapy within 31 days is 95.7%. Although this figure may be high it is still below the national average and therefore has room for improvement. Another statistic with room to improve is the one-year cancer survival rate which in East Lancashire is 66.7%. This is similar to the English average of 68.2%.

Cancer Research UK have clearly shown their motivation and intentions moving forward and I witnessed this first hand in their showcase as they discussed their ambitious strategies with me. Cancer obviously effects many people nationwide and I think it is important to support research into helping people with cancer and their families in any way we can.