Many cancer waiting time targets set to be dropped in England

Two-thirds of NHS cancer waiting time targets are expected to be scrapped in England, in a move the health service says aims to catch cancers earlier.

NHS bosses want to reduce the number of targets, most of which have been routinely missed in recent years, from nine to three.

They say the plan is backed by leading cancer experts and will simplify the “outdated” standards.But the head of the Radiotherapy UK charity said she is “deeply worried”.

Pat Price, who is also an oncologist and visiting professor at Imperial College London, said current performance was “shockingly bad”, and while too many targets could be disruptive, “the clear and simple truth is that we are not investing enough in cancer treatment capacity”.

The changes have been under consultation since last year, and an outcome is expected within days. NHS leaders are understood to be keen to press on with the plan as first announced – but it is still subject to final approval by Health Secretary Steve Barclay.






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