Julian backs cancer outcomes amendment to Health Bill
November 22, 2021
Julian has added his name to a proposed amendment to the government’s draft new health and care law to ensure greater NHS focus on earlier cancer diagnosis and increasing cancer survival rates.
His signature makes it more likely that this planned amendment will be considered for debate, as it enjoys support from MPs. The Health and Care Bill aims to improve the NHS through closer integration and better coordination between local services. It is being debated in the House of Commons on Monday and Tuesday this week, and is part of the government’s plan to assist the health service, with a very significant budget increase of some £44 billion from 2019-24.
The amendment, drafted by Julian’s Conservative colleague John Baron would alter the government’s instructions to the NHS to ensure it prioritised cancer outcomes i.e. survival rates, over other objectives like waiting times. This would ensure that the health service focused more on earlier diagnosis, the most important factor in successful cancer treatment, rather than the processes related to scheduling patients for treatment.
Better cancer survival rates enjoyed in some countries overseas reflect the fact they tend to diagnose earlier than in the UK, so changing the law as the amendment proposes will allow the NHS to focus on what most matters to patients and their families, and save more lives.
After signing the amendment, Julian said: “Having consistently pushed for better NHS cancer services over many years, I felt it was really important to support this proposed change to hopefully improve the cancer care experience for affected York families.
I expect Ministers to consider this proposal very seriously in the Commons this week, and want to see it incorporated into the draft health bill.
Previously, I successfully lobbied the government to lower the bowel cancer screening age, and most recently have pressed the Health Secretary on the risk of a covid-induced cancer treatment backlog in our city, and adopting a new robotic cancer surgery machine at York Hospital. Through supporting this week’s amendment and other measures, I will continue working to ensure York residents can access the very best NHS cancer services.”