12 February 2013
Responding to the Health Secretary’s statement in the House of Commons this afternoon on the funding of social care, Adrienne Betteley, Palliative and End of Life Programme Manager at Macmillan Cancer Support, says:
'While today’s announcement may help some people access the services they need, much more needs to be done for people at the end of their lives to fix our failing social care system.
'It is appalling that thousands of cancer patients die in hospitals in the UK every year, when 73% of them would prefer to be supported to die at home.1 Social care should be available to everyone in the last weeks of life without families having to worry about whether they will be able to access it.
'Macmillan is urging the Government to make social care free for everyone in the last weeks of life before the end of this Parliament in 2015. Supporting cancer patients to be cared for and die at home not only improves their quality of life, but also has the potential to save the NHS money.'
For further information, please contact:
Claire Keuls, Media & PR Officer, Macmillan Cancer Support
020 7840 4872 (out of hours 07801 307068)
Notes to Editors:
1 Statistic taken from Macmillan February 2010 online survey of 1,019 UK adults living with cancer. Seventy-three percent of people with cancer said they would prefer to die at home if all their concerns about dying at home (such as access to pain relief, round the clock care, and support for their family and carers) were addressed.
About Macmillan Cancer Support
More than one in three of us will get cancer. For most of us it will be the toughest fight we ever face. And the feelings of isolation and loneliness that so many people experience make it even harder.
But you don’t have to go through it alone. The Macmillan team is with you every step of the way.
We are the nurses and therapists helping you through treatment. The experts on the end of the phone. The advisers telling you which benefits you’re entitled to. The volunteers giving you a hand with the everyday things. The campaigners improving cancer care. The community there for you online, any time. The supporters who make it all possible.
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