UK lung cancer survival rates are improving

7% rise in one-year survival for lung cancer patients | Royal College of Physicians.

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The National Lung Cancer Audit annual report 2016, commissioned by the Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership (HQIP), shows an encouraging rise in survival as more patients receive life-prolonging treatments.

The report covers patients with lung cancer first diagnosed in 2015. It says there was a 7% increase in the number of people diagnosed with lung cancer surviving for longer than one year – rising from 31% to 38% in the five-year period from 2010 to 2015.

In addition, 60% of lung cancer patients received anti-cancer treatment such as chemotherapy, radiotherapy or surgery, meeting the target set out in the 2015 annual audit report.

Full report: National Lung Cancer Audit annual report 2016



National lung cancer audit

The Royal College of Physicians has published National Lung Cancer Audit annual report 2016.

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This is the 12th report on the clinical component (process of care) of the National Lung Cancer Audit. It publishes national and named team results on the quality of lung cancer care for patients diagnosed between 1 January and 31 December 2015. The key findings include a 7% rise in one-year survivorship since 2010.

Additional link: Royal College of Physicians news item

National Prostate Cancer Audit 2016 Annual Report

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90% of men receiving curative treatment for prostate cancer say their care was very good

Prostate cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer in men and the third most common cause of cancer-related mortality in the United Kingdom, with about 40,000 new cases each year resulting in 10,000 deaths. The NPCA audit looks at whether NHS services in England and Wales for men diagnosed with prostate cancer meet recommended standards.

This is the third Annual Report from the National Prostate Cancer Audit (NPCA) and presents current data regarding prostate cancer care in England and in Wales. In this report, the NPCA gathered information directly from patients to find out their views of their experience of care and the functional impact of radical treatments on their lives.

The full report is available to download here

View press release here

MPs find no evidence that Cancer Drugs Fund was spent wisely

Hawkes, N. BMJ 2016;352:i755

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A total of £1.27bn (€1.7bn; $1.9bn) has so far been spent on the Cancer Drugs Fund in England, but no data exist to show whether it has been spent wisely, the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee says in a new report.


Despite the Department of Health noting when the fund was set up in 2010 that it was important to collect clinical outcomes from the drugs it pays for, few data exist. The department encouraged NHS trusts to collect data but did not require them to do so. When NHS England took over the fund in April 2014 it made data collection mandatory, but the committee still found gaps for 2014-15, with 93% of records having no summary of outcomes.

The health department and NHS England “have not managed the fund effectively” the report concluded.

On the positive side, the committee found that the gap between the United Kingdom and other advanced economies in the uptake of novel cancer treatments had narrowed. In 2009 use of new cancer drugs in the UK was only 45% of the average figure across 13 other countries. But by 2013 it had reached 92%, and NHS England said that it was likely to have improved still further since then. The committee considered that the fund must have contributed to this improvement, even though it applies only in England and not in the rest of the UK.

Carry on reading the commentary article here

Read the full parliamentary report here

Achieving world-class cancer outcomes


The Royal College of Radiologists (RCR) has published Turning the ambition into action How the Cancer Strategy 2015–2020 can be implemented. This report by the college is a response for action to implement the English Cancer Strategy 2015-2020 published in July 2015. The RCR sets out what it can do to help deliver the strategy and explains where immediate action is required by the Government and health bodies. The College warns that without such action the strategy will rapidly become unachievable and patients will continue to suffer from late diagnosis and delayed treatment.

NAO report shows progress in improving cancer services and outcomes.

The Department of Health, its arms length bodies and the NHS have made progress in improving cancer services since 2010, according to the National Audit Office. However, significant variations in outcomes and access to services persist across England, indicating that there is considerable scope for further improvement.

Since the NAO last reported on cancer services, in 2010, overall outcomes for cancer patients have continued to improve. For example, the proportion of people surviving for one year and five years after diagnosis has increased to 69% (for those diagnosed in 2012) and 49% (for those diagnosed in 2008) respectively. However, data on 5-year survival rates published in 2013 (for those diagnosed between 2000 and 2007) showed that survival rates remained about 10% lower than the European average.

Read the full report here