Pancreatic Cancer

In February the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) published new clinical guideline on pancreatic cancer, providing guidance on diagnosis, monitoring those with an inherited high risk, as well as management of the disease. I am confident this guidance will ensure quicker and more accurate diagnosis of pancreatic cancer, as well as faster referral to pancreatic. There is also work underway to achieve early diagnosis of pancreatic cancer using biomarkers although this has not yet been extended into clinical practice.

Given the low survival rates for pancreatic cancer, research into new treatments and ways to diagnose this cancer early are vital. I am encouraged that £882 million has been spent on cancer research since 2010 through the National Institute for Health Research, with annual spending on cancer research up by over £35 million since 2010. I also recognise the indispensable contribution made by charities in driving forward research into cancer, with Cancer Research UK alone spending £27 million on pancreatic cancer over the last financial year. 

These measures form just part of the NHS's ambitious wider strategy to improve cancer outcomes and save 30,000 lives per year by 2020. Following the announcement of a £20 billion real terms increase in the budget of NHS England, I am more confident than ever that the cancer strategy will achieve this aim.