HC Deb 08 November 1999 vol 337 cc452-3W
Mr. Harvey

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) if he will list his Department's expenditure on cancer services for the last five years; [96239]

(2) how much extra money he plans to allocate to cancer services; and if this will be provided solely from general taxation; [96241]

(3) what plans he has to increase the extent of service provision for multi-disciplinary care for (a) breast, (b) ovarian, (c) lung, (d) prostate and (e) colorectal cancers throughout the UK. [96240]

Yvette Cooper

[holding answer 29 October 1999]: It is estimated that over 6 per cent. of total Government expenditure on the National Health Service is spent on cancer services. Since 1997, we have provided an additional £70 million into improving breast, colorectal, lung and outpatient cancer services. We will build on this record of achievement. An extra £80 million from the NHS modernisation fund will be invested in cancer services over the next two years. This will support the implementation of the two week outpatient wait for all urgent cancer referrals and work to further improve consistency and equity of access to cancer services through investment in workforce and equipment.

£93 million is being spent on cancer equipment from the New Opportunities Fund from the National Lottery and a further £23 million is also being set aside from the New Opportunities Fund for palliative care and prevention initiatives.

Professor Mike Richards will spearhead the drive on cancer within the Department and work with professional groups and the voluntary sector outside to modernise cancer services from prevention through to treatment and care.

Mr. Harvey

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what is the remit of Professor Michael Richards in relation to Government policy on cancer treatment; and to whom he reports. [96238]

Yvette Cooper

[holding answer 29 October 1999]: On 25 October, we announced a package of measures to up the pace of change and deliver faster and more wide ranging improvement to cancer services. This included, for the first time, the appointment of a National Cancer Director. Reporting to Ministers, Professor Mike Richards will spearhead our concerted drive on cancer. He will work in partnership with doctors, nurses, general practitioners, other health professionals and the voluntary sector to improve prevention and modernise cancer services to help ensure equitable access to high quality cancer care. He will work within the Department of Health with executive responsibility.

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