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Have your say – Your Voice is Important

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Respond to the UK Government 10 Year Cancer Plan.

The UK Government is currently consulting on a 10 Year Cancer Plan and it is so important that those affected by cancer respond.

It only takes a few minutes and this is your opportunity to tell the Government what needs to happen for cancer patients and cancer services if we want the world-class care we deserve. Find the consultation here

Here at RT-UK we know radiotherapy has a key role to play in improving cancer outcomes in the UK but only if it is correctly prioritised, funded and supported by the Government. At the moment our radiotherapy services are on their knees and only receive 5% of the entire cancer budget. We feel strongly it should be one of the top priorities in the cancer plan, not near the bottom.

The call for evidence is open to all until 11:45pm on 1 April 2022 and can be easily completed via an online survey. Please take the survey and share your view.

To give you an idea we have included a few bullet points from our consultation response should you wish to support them in your submission.

The 10-Year Cancer plan needs to:

  1. Increase patient access to radiotherapy in the UK: Radiotherapy should be given to 53-60% of cancer patients but according to CRUK figures only 27% of UK cancer patients receive it. This has disastrous consequences for patients. More than 3.5 million people do not have radiotherapy within the recommended 45 minute travel time of their home. The UK Government need to invest in access to high quality radiotherapy services closer to people’s homes.
  2. Appoint a minister for radiotherapy: Many of the problems in radiotherapy stem from a lack of understanding at the top of Government.. We need the Government to appoint a minister to oversee the future of radiotherapy and standardise world-class cancer care.
  3. A workforce plan that includes the multidisciplinary radiotherapy workforce: Radiotherapy plays a vital role in cancer care but too often when discussing cancer policy decision makers overlook this specialist cancer workforce.
  4. Out of date equipment: Half of NHS Trusts have machines that are past their 10-year suggested life span which has consequential reliability issues and an inability to deliver modern precise radiotherapy. There is an urgent need for replacement machines and additional capacity to ensure we can treat more patients, faster and with better access.
  5. Bureaucracy: Radiotherapy is held back by red tape that leads to underperformance, inefficiencies, and waste. There are perverse tariffs that mean even in centres that have more modern machines that can treat patients more quickly in fewer sessions, staff are not allowed to do so. Instead, they have to treat less effectively over more sessions as the current tariff generates income to the Trust based on the number of visits.
  6. Include recommendations from the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Radiotherapy manifesto for world class radiotherapy services to achieve the above by investing £850M over three years.

For any further information or support, please do get in touch via info@radiotherapy.org.uk

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