General Election 2015

By 2020, nearly half of us will expect to face cancer in our lifetime.

Why action was needed

Without urgent political action, the UK will continue to fail to support everyone with cancer and this situation would only get worse as the numbers of people with cancer soars. That’s why the 2015 General Election was such an important opportunity. It was our time to get the new Government to commit to improving cancer care to ensure everyone receives the best possible care and support.

Watch the video above for more on our General Election campaign success.

With your support, we made a difference

With your help, we brought the voices of people affected by cancer to the heart of the election and kept cancer on top of the political agenda. We wanted to make sure that the future Government committed to make cancer care a priority. 

Thanks to your support, all of the main political parties made broad manifesto commitments to improve health and social care if elected. Our Government now has the power to deliver on their election promises, to improve cancer care for all.

Read more on each of our calls below or read Macmillan's State of the Nation report 2014 [PDF, 4MB].

What did each party promise?

All of the main political parties made promises to improve cancer care during the next parliament.

Read our responses to the party manifestos as they came out:

Macmillan Cancer Support responds to Conservative manifesto

14 April 2015

Responding to the Conservative General Election Manifesto Dr Fran Woodard, Director of Policy and Research at Macmillan Cancer Support says:

“Macmillan Cancer Support welcomes the package of commitments in the Conservative Manifesto which, if implemented, have the ability to make a real difference to the lives of people with cancer in England and their loved ones.

“The Conservative Party have committed to delivering the new cancer strategy to improve survival rates; offering safe and compassionate care where all people are treated with dignity and respect; and supporting commissioners to combine better health and social care services for the terminally ill so that more people are able to die in a place of their choice.

“These are the three areas of cancer care which people with cancer told us mattered most to them this general election, and which Macmillan has been championing with all Westminster parties.

“In addition the Conservative Party have committed to increased support for full-time unpaid carers.

“Macmillan is looking to all political parties to make cancer care a priority in their manifestos. We will then be urging whoever wins the election to implement the promises they’ve made and improve the lives of people with cancer.”

We will then be urging whoever wins the election to implement the promises they’ve made and improve the lives of people with cancer.

Dr Fran Woodard, Director of Policy and Research at Macmillan Cancer Support

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Macmillan Cancer Support responds to UKIP manifesto

15 April 2015

Responding to the UKIP general election manifesto Dr Fran Woodard, Director of Policy and Research says:

“Macmillan Cancer Support welcomes UKIP’s commitment to abolish hospital car parking charges. If implemented, this could help cut the costs of living with cancer.

“UKIP have also acknowledged the importance of ensuring the elderly and vulnerable are treated with dignity which is one of the aspects of care that people with cancer told us mattered most to them this general election.

“Macmillan is looking to all political parties to make cancer care a priority in their manifestos. We will then be urging whoever wins the election to implement the promises they’ve made and improve the lives of people with cancer.”

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Macmillan Cancer Support responds to Green Party manifesto

14 April 2015

Responding to the Green Party General Election Manifesto Dr Fran Woodard, Director of Policy and Research at Macmillan Cancer Support says:

“Macmillan Cancer Support welcomes the package of commitments in the Green Party Manifesto which, if implemented, have the ability to make a real difference to the lives of people with cancer in England and their loved ones.

“The Green Party have committed to ensuring cancer outcomes in the UK are as good as the best in Europe; engaging, empowering and hearing patients and carers at all times, treating both with dignity; and providing free social care at the end of life, enabling dying people, including those with cancer, to choose where they die.

“These are the three areas of cancer care which people with cancer told us mattered most to them this general election, and which Macmillan has been championing with all Westminster parties.

“Macmillan is looking to all political parties to make cancer care a priority in their manifestos. We will then be urging whoever wins the election to implement the promises they’ve made and improve the lives of people with cancer.”

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Macmillan Cancer Support responds to Lib Dem Manifesto

15 April 2015

Responding to the Liberal Democrat general election manifesto Dr Fran Woodard, Director of Policy and Research says:

“Macmillan Cancer Support welcomes the Liberal Democrat’s commitment to free social care at the end of life in their manifesto. If implemented, this could make a real difference in helping people with cancer die in the place of their choice, usually at home.

“This is one of the areas of care which people with cancer told us mattered most to them this general election.

“In addition, the Lib Dems have also committed to placing a new duty on the NHS to identify carers and have acknowledged the need for improved cancer survival rates and a well-trained NHS workforce.

“Macmillan is looking to all political parties to make cancer care a priority in their manifestos. We will then be urging whoever wins the election to implement the promises they’ve made and improve the lives of people with cancer.”

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Macmillan Cancer Support responds to Labour Health Manifesto

13 April 2015

Responding to the Labour Party’s General Election Health Manifesto Dr Fran Woodard, Director of Policy and Research at Macmillan Cancer Support says:

“Macmillan Cancer Support welcomes the package of commitments in the Labour Health Manifesto which, if implemented, have the ability to make a real difference to the lives of people with cancer in England and their loved ones.

“Labour have committed to ensuring our cancer survival rates match the best in Europe through improving early diagnosis; making sure NHS staff are supported to treat every single patient with dignity and respect during treatment; and allowing people with the greatest care needs, including those with cancer, to die at home if they wish.

“These are the three areas of cancer care which people with cancer told us mattered most to them this general election, and which Macmillan has been championing with all Westminster parties.

“In addition Labour have committed to ensuring family and friends who are looking after someone with cancer get the right emotional, practical and physical support they desperately need by placing a new duty on the NHS to identify carers.

“Macmillan is looking to all political parties to make cancer care a priority in their manifestos. We will then be urging whoever wins to implement the promises they’ve made and improve the lives of people with cancer.”

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Implementing the promises

In May, the UK went to the polls and elected the Conservative Party with a majority, so the commitments outlined in their manifesto forms the basis of the new Government’s programme of work. However, MPs from all political parties will have a part to play in pushing for improvements to cancer care.

Macmillan will now work hard to make sure that our General Election campaign calls are championed and real improvements made for everyone affected by cancer in England.

Around the UK

In May 2016 national elections will take place in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. As health services are devolved in these nations, Macmillan will be working hard to ensure cancer care is a priority for the Scottish Parliament, Welsh Assembly and Northern Ireland Assembly in the run up to the elections.

See what Macmillan is up to in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales.