27 July 2010
Responding to the Government’s announcement today, which reveals a £50 million interim fund will be put in place this year ahead of the Cancer Drug Fund coming into place next year, Mike Hobday, Head of Policy at Macmillan Cancer Support, said:
‘This is excellent news and we are delighted the Government has listened to our tireless campaign to improve access to cancer treatments that are not already routinely available on the NHS. A few extra months or weeks mean an awful lot to a family affected by cancer.
‘We are anxious that the NHS uses the new interim fund to ensure that all those with a rarer cancer also get better access to treatment. This is a major issue for people with rarer cancers as they are currently being penalised because of the type of cancer they have. It’s simply not acceptable that a patients’ chance of getting clinically proven treatment has depended so much on whether their cancer is a common or a rare one.
‘We believe everyone should get the drugs their doctor recommends, regardless of what type of cancer they have, or where they live. A YouGov poll for Macmillan Cancer Support showed that 90% of the public support people with rarer cancers having the same access to cancer drugs as people with more common cancers, even though it would cost the NHS more.'
For more information and support, call Macmillan free on 0808 808 00 00 or visit www.macmillan.org.uk/accesstotreatment
For further information, please contact:
Julie Wills, Assistant Media & PR Officer, Macmillan Cancer Support
020 7840 4933
Notes to Editors:
 All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 2167 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 11th to 13th May 2010. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all UK adults (aged 18+).
About Macmillan Cancer Support
Macmillan Cancer Support improves the lives of people affected by cancer, providing practical, medical, emotional and financial support. Working alongside people affected by cancer, Macmillan works to improve cancer care. One in three of us will get cancer. Two million of us are living with it. If you are affected by cancer Macmillan can help.
Call the Macmillan Support Line on 0808 808 00 00, Monday to Friday, 9am to 8pm. Calls are free, including from mobiles or visit www.macmillan.org.uk