Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:42 pm on 1st September 2020.

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Photo of Matthew Hancock Matthew Hancock Secretary of State for Health and Social Care 3:42 pm, 1st September 2020

The hon. Gentleman’s point about research is important. In the places where research has paused because of the virus, the programme of restart is well under way. I am glad to say that although the backlog of cancer cases had increased—because it is not safe to treat cancer during a pandemic and because of some of the surgery that had to be paused—we are now halfway through recovering from that backlog on the latest figures. Obviously that recovery is incredibly important, and it is important to look at the catch-up as well as the absolute drop in overall delivery of cancer services. It is also critically important that people who fear that they may have cancer come forward to the NHS.