I met with representatives from Cancer Research UK at the Labour Party Annual Conference. This was to discuss how he can work with the UKs largest cancer charity to ensure that the Government pursues the best policies to help both those diagnosed with cancer and those caring for someone.
I met with Cancer Research UK following requests from several constituents to do so.
Whilst at Cancer Research UKs stand Mr. Hanson learnt that the healthcare that people receive in Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board is some of the best in Wales and the United Kingdom. For example 85.6% of patients have to wait no more than 8 weeks for a colonoscopy or flexible sigmoidoscopy test. That is higher than the Welsh average of 63.6%. Moreover, 99% of cancer patients in Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board receive their first treatment within 31 days of a decision to treat. This is higher than the Welsh average of 97.3%.
However, the percentage of people who attend their screenings for bowel cancer is lower in the Flintshire Local Authority Area (54.3%) than the Welsh average (55.2%). This shows that people, when asked to go a screening they should. It remains one of the best ways to spot bowel cancer earlier. Patients are more likely to survive bowel cancer if it is diagnosed at an earlier stage.
Cancer Research UK has established itself as the charity that effectively works with Parliament, and the devolved regions, to ensure that policy is well thought out and targeted to put the patient at its heart. Several constituents wrote to me asking me to attend the Cancer Research UK stall at Labour Conference and I was more than happy to do so.
I learnt that 4 in 10 cancer cases can be prevented, but they require people to live healthy lifestyles and to attend screenings when requested by their doctor. Our local health board has an excellent record for ensuring that people with cancer receive some of the best care in the UK. But we have a worryingly low number of people attending their screenings for bowel cancer. I hope people will take note of what Cancer Research UK tell us and attend their screenings.
There are around 4,500 cancer cases in Delyn per year. Sadly, there are 2,100 cancer deaths per year across north Wales. We need to make sure that we focus as a nation for new treatments and cures to cut this devastating number. I will continue to work with Cancer Research UK to ensure that cancer research receives the funding it needs to do just this. I believe it is important for the Government to continue to fund cancer research.