Cancer: Waiting Lists

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 13th July 2021.

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Photo of Tim Farron Tim Farron Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs), Liberal Democrat Lords Spokesperson (Communities and Local Government), Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Housing, Communities and Local Government)

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether he has made an assessment of the implications for his policies of the findings of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Radiotherapy’s report entitled Catch Up With Cancer - The Way Forward; whether he plans to adopt those recommendations; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Tim Farron Tim Farron Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs), Liberal Democrat Lords Spokesperson (Communities and Local Government), Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Housing, Communities and Local Government)

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether his Department has made an assessment of the implications for its policies of the findings of Action Radiotherapy’s flash survey on radiotherapy and the radiotherapy workforce from May 2021; and whether he plans to use those findings to inform his Department’s work on radiotherapy.

Photo of Jo Churchill Jo Churchill The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

No formal assessment has been made of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Radiotherapy’s report and we have no plans to adopt these recommendations. Action Radiotherapy’s flash survey will be taken into consideration alongside existing programmes of work. Health Education England’s Cancer Workforce Plan commits to the expansion of capacity and skills across six professions by 2021, including clinical radiology.

During the pandemic, the National Health Service has significantly increased the use of new radiotherapy methods to deliver targeted treatment in fewer hospital visits. Maximising capacity and minimising patient time in hospital, particularly through the use of fewer fractions, remain important in the recovery of cancer services. In addition, £32 million has been made available from the Spending Review 2020 to support the replacement of radiotherapy equipment in 2021-22.

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