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  • Putting cancer surgery under the spotlight - Cancer Research UK - Science blog
    spotlight That s why we asked a team of independent academics at the University of Birmingham and the consultancy ICF GHK to assess how surgery services are doing across the UK Mixed findings The result is our first major report on cancer surgery which we hope could be a valuable first step towards improving this crucial treatment in the future The researchers interviewed over 50 UK surgeons about their experiences and carried out an international survey on cancer surgery outside the UK which received 138 responses from surgeons across the world Their findings were mixed On the one hand newer techniques such as keyhole surgery and improved approaches to care mean that some patients spend less time in hospital and recover faster But there s also some evidence that services are being stretched and that research to improve surgery needs far more support Access to surgery The researchers looked at how the NHS can make sure patients are getting access to high quality surgery They found that there s no easy way to organise surgery services across hospitals what s best depends on the type of cancer For example some rare cancers require specialist care that can only be given by a small numbers of experts across the country and so inevitably this means there are fewer hospitals able to provide the surgery The NHS has a challenge on its hands to make sure that patients are getting the surgery they need but without having to travel too far from home We know that patients in the UK seem to have fewer operations than patients in some other countries and that numbers of operations for different cancers vary across our country The researchers explored possible reasons for these differences including travel costs age related issues ethnicity and gender They found that although there is no strong evidence that any of these factors affected access to surgery we really need more research to better understand variations in access and whether these differences contribute to differences in survival Making sure we have the best surgeons available The surgeons interviewed for the report were also asked whether they thought current medical training programmes are up to scratch Their answers weren t encouraging some were worried that these programmes aren t producing the experienced surgeons our health system needs in particular those who can handle general surgery especially emergency surgery as well as complex more specialised types The quality and performance of qualified surgeons was also discussed in the interviews Since last year there have been publicly available data on the performance of individual surgeons across the country which in theory helps you hold your surgeon to account Those who were interviewed for the report agreed that this is great news but cautioned that it takes a team of people to perform good surgery so patients need better more sophisticated data if they are really to hold NHS staff to account Developing surgical research Another issue the report looks at and which is particularly

    Original URL path: http://scienceblog.cancerresearchuk.org/2014/02/19/putting-cancer-surgery-under-the-spotlight/ (2016-02-11)
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  • Will the NHS reforms give us a world-class radiotherapy service? - Cancer Research UK - Science blog
    NHS paid different prices across the country for radiotherapy Now that NHS England is responsible it can level the playing field for all radiotherapy centres so they re up to the same standard across the country and paid according to the amount and types of treatment they provide We hope these changes will lead to better radiotherapy services But will they really have the impact we want and meet Government pledges to help more people than ever to survive cancer This was the key question we wanted to answer ahead of the reforms taking effect And we decided that the best way to answer this was to ask the professionals what they thought We went on the road We held a series of workshops In early 2013 we held Radiotherapy Roadshow events in London Oxford Birmingham and Manchester Collectively these brought together over 100 people from across the radiotherapy community including service managers scientists clinicians and patients At each event we asked for our guests opinions on the future of the radiotherapy service and they did not let us down Today we re publishing a report reflecting the discussions we had at the Roadshows Improving radiotherapy services to save more lives PDF So what did the radiotherapy community think Cautious optimism Experts have made a series of recommedations Most participants felt that it was too soon to tell how well the new system will work in practice or whether this would be better for patients but they shared some useful predictions for the future Fortunately many said that the changes should improve the number of cancer patients able to receive radiotherapy treatment In particular the community felt that the changes will help to remove the postcode lottery and level the playing field between specialist cancer hospitals and general hospitals Some thought that the changes would mean more financial incentives for the NHS to improve the quality of the treatment patients receive But more r esearch into radiotherapy and investment in new technologies would help the service to improve even faster Some participants were particularly concerned that there are still few incentives to promote research and innovation within NHS radiotherapy services Overall there are promising signs that radiotherapy will improve in England But it may be some time before we have a truly exceptional radiotherapy service that helps us to be among the best in Europe at tackling cancer particularly as some experts predicted teething problems as the NHS reforms are rolled out The next steps As well as discussing the potential issues the radiotherapy community suggested ways to help make sure the changes are successful and how the Government can support the radiotherapy service even further in future We explain these in more detail in our report but here are some of their broader messages Firstly NHS England should ensure that doctors across the country are referring enough patients for radiotherapy treatment Secondly NHS England should support and communicate with the radiotherapy staff and patients effectively to ensure a smooth

    Original URL path: http://scienceblog.cancerresearchuk.org/2013/08/22/will-the-nhs-reforms-give-us-a-world-class-radiotherapy-service/ (2016-02-11)
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  • It’s time to Cross Cancer Out – our General Election campaign - Cancer Research UK - Science blog
    at the heart of this progress which has seen survival rates in the UK double in the last 40 years Thanks to our supporters we ve already had some fantastic campaigning successes in recent years as the graphic below shows These have saved lives and improved public awareness of cancer and its causes and symptoms Our campaign successes so far click the image to view larger version But to accelerate this progress and see more people beat the disease the political drive to take on cancer must quicken to match the pace of research The next Government s decisions will affect how fast and how far we progress in the next five years towards our goal of beating cancer Building relationships with tomorrow s decision makers Every one of the 650 MPs elected to Parliament next May has the opportunity to make real change happen on the issues that affect cancer patients in the UK They are given a platform from which they can support and deliver on measures that we know from our research will save more lives That s why it s important that even before an election is held we make sure the candidates standing for a seat in the next Parliament are fully engaged with the issues around cancer Through campaigning we can provide important information about what we think are the top priorities for beating cancer increasing awareness of the critical role the candidates could play if they become an MP and helping to make our priorities their priorities If we can make sure that as many MPs as possible in the next Parliament are frontrunners in the fight to cross cancer out we will have started to build the kind of political environment that will best support our aims and ensures the research we do has the greatest possible impact during the next five years of Government and beyond Our campaign calls Beating cancer is a big ambition but with the right political support to improve early diagnosis and access to treatments we will get us there sooner The Cross Cancer Out campaign urges all candidates from all political parties to commit to making our NHS cancer services the best in the world It focuses on a number of key measures aimed at improving cancer survival across the UK Continued support for campaigns to raise public awareness of the signs and symptoms of cancer A commitment to increase participation in the national bowel cancer screening programme Equal access to innovative radiotherapy surgery and effective cancer drugs including drugs targeted to patients tumours Read more about where we think the next Government can take action to improve early diagnosis and access to treatments How you can help Cancer matters to all of us whether it s through direct experience ourselves or our families having been touched by the disease So let s all join the fight and play our part to Cross Cancer Out you and your next MP included Take two minutes to sign

    Original URL path: http://scienceblog.cancerresearchuk.org/2014/10/24/its-time-to-cross-cancer-out-our-general-election-campaign/ (2016-02-11)
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  • The Pharmaceutical Price Regulation Scheme – cutting the cost of cancer drugs - Cancer Research UK - Science blog
    rightly prepared to pay top dollar for new drugs provided their benefits are clear So as you can imagine the higher the price of the drug the more confident NICE needs to be in the evidence that it will bring benefit to patients How does the Government decide what price it should pay for drugs Pricing negotiations known as the Pharmaceutical Price Regulation Scheme or PPRS have taken place between the Government and the pharmaceutical industry every five years since the middle of the last century The scheme runs on the principle that pharmaceutical companies are only permitted to make a certain profit margin on their products enough to cover the cost of developing the treatment and offset the cost of testing the hundreds of other drugs that fail the rigorous clinical trials system Previous pricing agreements between the Government and pharmaceutical companies focused solely on reducing prices Price cuts are of course good news for the Government purse and the NHS budget as a whole but ultimately mean little for individual patients What many people don t know is that accounting for inflation we have seen an overall price decrease in the cost of drugs of around a quarter over the last 10 years Yet many new drugs are still considered too expensive to be prescribed on the NHS An example of this is the recent decision by NICE not recommend four kidney cancer drugs which is now under review What s so special about the new scheme The new scheme not only includes price cuts of nearly 6 per cent to be phased in over the next three years but also includes two new measures 1 Flexible pricing One of the key criticisms of the current pricing system is that although pharma companies could guess at the price range at which drugs would be approved by NICE the Government s reluctance to allow prices to go up as well as down meant that the pharma companies tended to set prices right at the top of this range But under the new agreement companies will be actively encouraged to consider value in their pricing and after initially pricing a given drug relatively cheaply to encourage approval will have room to increase prices as more evidence on how well it performs in patients becomes available Setting lower prices when a drug is first introduced into the market with the option of raising them after new evidence shows just how well they work in a real life setting means that drugs are much more likely to be approved by NICE first time around and that patients in the UK will be entitled to the same world class treatments available elsewhere in Europe The Government will also set tracking systems in place to allow us to draw comparisons on which drugs are being made available to our European neighbours We re already starting to see how flexibility in pricing can improve the lives of cancer patients In November after over two years

    Original URL path: http://scienceblog.cancerresearchuk.org/2009/01/06/the-pharmaceutical-price-regulation-scheme-cutting-the-cost-of-cancer-drugs/ (2016-02-11)
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  • Peter Johnson | Cancer Research UK - Science blog
    research history Our research strategy FUNDING FOR RESEARCHERS Our funding schemes Biomarker Project Awards Career Development Fellowship Grand Challenge award View all schemes and deadlines Applying for funding Start your application online Guide to filling in your application form How to make a successful application Funding committees Manage your research grant Manage your grant online Guide to managing a grant online Notify us of new publications Update your profile How we deliver research Our research strategy Our institutes Our centres Our research partnerships More Drug discovery and development Recently funded awards Researcher case studies ABOUT US What we do We beat cancer We fundraise We develop policy Our organisation Our strategy Our Trustees CEO and Executive Board Annual report and accounts Annual review Current jobs Graduates and interns Your development Benefits Cancer news Science blog Latest press releases Latest news reports Search all news More Contact Us Press office Publications HOME ABOUT CANCER SUPPORT US NEWS RESOURCES FUNDING RESEARCH ABOUT US You are here Home border 0 Support us Home About us Cancer news Science blog Author Peter Johnson Author Peter Johnson Cancer Drugs Fund decision How can we deliver personalised treatment with an impersonal funding system Category Science blog January 14 2015 Peter Johnson Our chief clinician Professor Peter Johnson gives his take on the recent announcement of changes to NHS England s Cancer Drugs Fund Read More We re really struggling to match the demand for cancer treatment Category Science blog September 8 2014 Peter Johnson We caught up with our chief clinician Professor Peter Johnson about the findings of a new report looking at the state of NHS cancer services Read More Older Posts Newer Posts Popular posts Most read today Most discussed Don t believe the hype 10 persistent cancer myths debunked How does alcohol cause

    Original URL path: http://scienceblog.cancerresearchuk.org/author/peterjohnson/ (2016-02-11)
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  • “We’re really struggling to match the demand for cancer treatment” - Cancer Research UK - Science blog
    really struggling to match the demand for cancer treatment Category Science blog September 8 2014 Peter Johnson We caught up with our chief clinician Professor Peter Johnson about the findings of a new report we released today looking at the state of NHS cancer services The changes to the NHS that have taken place over last 18 months have thrown up some real challenges And when it comes to caring for our patients things on the ground are starting to get quite tricky So the findings of today s new report on Cancer Services entirely resonate with those of us on the front line in the health service On the one hand we re seeing ever increasing patient numbers and more complex treatment pathways we used to only have one type of hormone treatment for prostate cancer for example but now we can offer chemotherapy and second and third line hormone treatments So planning the best care is an ever more challenging task The graph of patient numbers and treatment complexity is rising exponentially On the other hand notwithstanding some extra money for the Cancer Drugs Fund the other resources we have remain static and in real terms have even declined slightly We re having to do more with less And while it s often possible to find ways of working more efficiently this has its limits we re getting to a point where things are going to become very difficult indeed But it s not just that our resources are ever more stretched we ve lost much of the expertise we had to help us organise cancer services so that s making it even harder to keep on top of things Local Cancer Networks have disappeared and it s much more difficult to organise the care we offer our patients as the services become more fragmented The loss of national leadership by the dissolution of the Cancer Action Team has also led to a loss of focus on cancer an illness that will affect nearly a half of us and which is still the leading health concern among the public For example we know that if we want to make the best use of many of the new treatments that are becoming available we need a network of molecular testing laboratories to tell us what genetic changes are present in patients cancers But there seems to be no way to plan this nationally So despite knowing what we need to do we have spent the last year wondering how to get it done in the reorganised NHS It all amounts to a situation where we re running ever harder just to stay still in the face of an ever more complex reality We ve lost the ability to think and plan ahead and are really struggling to match resources to the demand So we really need things to change soon or much of the progress we have recently made in treating cancer patients is going to be lost And

    Original URL path: http://scienceblog.cancerresearchuk.org/2014/09/08/were-really-struggling-to-match-the-demand-for-cancer-treatment/ (2016-02-11)
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  • UK Government missing the target over new cancer drug tests - Cancer Research UK - Science blog
    think it is vital that the NHS is set up to ensure that patients can be tested and receive these drugs if they need them no matter where they live What is a molecular diagnostic test As we outlined above molecular diagnostics test a patient s cancer for particular genetic mutations This can then help doctors work out the best course of treatment for that patient be that a certain type of chemotherapy or a targeted drug if available for the type of genetic mutation giving the patient the best possible chance of a good outcome As well as helping patients get the best evidence based drugs for their condition these tests can mean patients can avoid side effects from the drugs that will probably not work for them Molecular diagnostic testing can also save NHS money by avoiding prescribing drugs that won t work for certain patients future proof the NHS by supporting uptake of new personalised treatments help the NHS become a world leader in stratified medicine trials And on top of all this the concept of targeted medicines is well developed in cancer but it can also apply to other diseases too What s the current situation In 2011 the Government said in its Cancer Plan for England that it would develop a commissioning and funding structure to enable the efficient delivery of high quality molecular diagnostic testing through centres of excellence We are really disappointed to say that little progress has been made We ve discovered that in England there s considerable variation across the country both in the tests availability and in how doctors can pay for them As an example in 2011 we surveyed labs that provide these types of test That survey showed that thousands of patients including non small cell lung cancer and colorectal cancer patients were missing out on testing that could help them get the most appropriate treatment for their cancer Our evidence was used by the Department of Health when it consulted on the set up of a national service We responded but as far as we are aware no action was taken after this although we acknowledge that this came at a difficult time when the NHS reforms were taking place As a comparison Scotland has a national service established to provide these tests for all cancer patients that need them And patients in Northern Ireland are pretty well covered by its major cancer centre in Belfast But Wales like England doesn t have a nationally coordinated service We know from our survey and from talking to people in labs that a national service would help improve things for patients But there needs to be comprehensive data from all countries to better understand the extent of variation in access to tests But it s not just about access Because there isn t a policy for a national service it means that there is variation in how labs across England pay for these tests with some labs absorbing the

    Original URL path: http://scienceblog.cancerresearchuk.org/2014/12/01/uk-government-missing-the-target-over-new-cancer-drug-tests/ (2016-02-11)
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  • Hilary Tovey | Cancer Research UK - Science blog
    and deadlines Applying for funding Start your application online Guide to filling in your application form How to make a successful application Funding committees Manage your research grant Manage your grant online Guide to managing a grant online Notify us of new publications Update your profile How we deliver research Our research strategy Our institutes Our centres Our research partnerships More Drug discovery and development Recently funded awards Researcher case studies ABOUT US What we do We beat cancer We fundraise We develop policy Our organisation Our strategy Our Trustees CEO and Executive Board Annual report and accounts Annual review Current jobs Graduates and interns Your development Benefits Cancer news Science blog Latest press releases Latest news reports Search all news More Contact Us Press office Publications HOME ABOUT CANCER SUPPORT US NEWS RESOURCES FUNDING RESEARCH ABOUT US You are here Home border 0 Support us Home About us Cancer news Science blog Author Hilary Tovey Author Hilary Tovey Radiotherapy report vast improvements needed to get the best for patients Category Science blog November 6 2012 Hilary Tovey For several years Cancer Research UK has been calling on the government to invest in improvements to our radiotherapy services across the UK At the National C Read More Government radiotherapy announcement is fantastic news for patients Category Science blog October 11 2012 Hilary Tovey David Cameron announced a new radiotherapy innovation fund this week He s making 15million available to the NHS in England so that by April 2013 mor Read More Radiotherapy report lays foundation for improved care Category Science blog August 2 2011 Hilary Tovey We often talk about radiotherapy as the unsung hero of cancer treatment it helps cure more people than cancer drugs yet few people think of it as a modern Read More The interim Cancer Drugs Fund how will it work and will it improve access for patients Category Science blog October 1 2010 Hilary Tovey This morning the Department of Health announced the details of a new interim Cancer Drugs Fund This Fund is 50 million of new money or Read More Radiotherapy can cure cancer but UK patients might be missing out Category Science blog September 7 2010 Hilary Tovey There s an important cancer treatment which is widely available in the rest of Europe that isn t being offered to nearly as many patients in the UK as it Read More To Commit to Beat Cancer the Government must provide access to world class treatments Category Science blog April 13 2010 Hilary Tovey Cancer Research UK s Commit to Beat Cancer campaign calls on parliamentary candidates to pledge to keep cancer high on the political agenda Previously Read More The Pharmaceutical Price Regulation Scheme cutting the cost of cancer drugs Category Science blog January 6 2009 Hilary Tovey With the New Year upon us and the sound of cash registers still ringing in our ears from Christmas the nation is tightening its belt to ride out the difficult Read More Older Posts

    Original URL path: http://scienceblog.cancerresearchuk.org/author/hildamatilda/ (2016-02-11)
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