§ Mr. Cousins
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what steps he is taking to(a) improve, (b) extend and (c) update statistics for five year survival rates for common cancers; and what programme of development work in such health statistics is under way.
§ Ruth Kelly
The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician. I have asked him to reply.
Letter from Len Cook to Mr. Jim Cousins, dated 24 February 2002As National Statistician, I have been asked to reply to your recent question concerning what steps are being taken to improve, extend and update statistics for five year survival rates for common cancers; and what programme of development work in such health statistics is underway. (99099)The Office for National Statistics is currently collaborating with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine to produce survival statistics for adult patients diagnosed with the 20 commonest cancers in England and Wales during 1991–1999 and followed up to the end of 2001. These account for almost 90% of adult cancers. The work will include estimates of the socioeconomic gradients in cancer survival.Survival analyses based on complete follow up of patients for five years from diagnosis will be possible for those diagnosed up to 1996. As follow up is not yet available beyond 2001, a recently developed statistical method, "period" survival, will be used to estimate the five-year survival for patients diagnosed up to 1999.The results, which will be published later this year, will provide robust and up-to-date evidence on changes in survival during the 1990s.