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John Baron opened proceedings by welcoming everyone to the 16th annual Britain Against Cancer conference. He noted that this year’s conference was the last big opportunity before the general election to question the key note speakers and expert panel on their cancer priorities for the next government.
Baron covered some of the main concerns of the APPGC moving forward, including the importance of earlier diagnosis to matching the best cancer survival rates in Europe, getting clarity over the Cancer Drugs Fund and improving patient experience. He stated if the UK was to save an additional 5,000 lives per year, this would match us with the average cancer survival rates in Europe, but by committing to save an additional 10,000 lives per year, we would become the best in Europe, an ambition which we should be striving to achieve.
Mr Baron closed his welcome address by again reiterating the success of the previous year but stating there is much to do, and the day ahead would give a clear indicator of the cancer priorities which will shape policy in the coming year and beyond. Mr Baron highlighted one of the principal calls APPGC and ‘Cancer across the Domains: a vision for 2020’, that NHS England include a cancer survival outcome in the Clinical Commissioning Group Delivery Dashboard.