14 January 2016
Commenting on new cancer waiting times  published for November, Lynda Thomas, Chief Executive of Macmillan Cancer Support said:
“It is truly disheartening that key cancer waiting times are yet again in breach of the recommended targets and patients are still being left in the lurch. For nineteen consecutive months the target for being treated following an urgent GP referral has been missed and with more and more people diagnosed with cancer each year, this is only going to get worse.
“Waiting a long time to be diagnosed and then again, to start treatment, is the last thing people need at what is already an incredibly isolating and difficult time. I can only imagine the worry and strain that must put on people and their families and we have a duty to give these people timely access to treatment. It is unacceptable that almost half of trusts (71 out of 148) are still missing the 62 day target for urgent GP referral to first treatment , meaning that in November last year almost 2,000 patients had to wait more than 62 days before starting vital treatment.
“These new waiting time figures reinforce the urgent need for improvements in cancer care in England and that is why the government and NHS must fully fund and implement the recommendations laid out in the cancer strategy, to ensure people get the best possible care and support. Without it, it is hard to see how this recurring problem will ever be resolved.”
For further information, please contact:
Claire McMahon, Media & PR Officer, Macmillan Cancer Support
020 7091 2103 (out of hours 07801 307068)
Notes to Editors:
2. The number of trusts failing to meet the 62-day target is based on providers who gave first treatment to at least five people with cancer during November 2015
About Macmillan Cancer Support
When you have cancer, you don’t just worry about what will happen to your body, you worry about what will happen to your life. Whether it’s concerns about who you can talk to, planning for the extra costs or what to do about work, at Macmillan we understand how a cancer diagnosis can take over everything.
That’s why we’re here. We provide support that helps people take back control of their lives. But right now, we can’t reach everyone who needs us. We need your help to make sure that people affected by cancer get the support they need to face the toughest fight of their life. No one should face cancer alone, and with your support no one will.
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