Cancer tsar says NHS must change

A report by Professor Mike Richards, the national cancer director for England, says that the NHS must continue to change to give cancer patients the best chance.

The report, entitled Getting it right for people with cancer: the clinical case for change, highlights many successes including decreasing mortality rates and an increase in the number of specialists. However, to meet greater future demand Professor Richards says that the DoH needs to push ahead with reforming the way cancer services are provided in the NHS.

Professor Richards suggests that improvements can be implemented through, better co-ordination of patient care, centralisation of complex services, moving simpler tests and treatments closer to the patients and ensuring greater staff flexibility.

'Cancer care has improved greatly since I first qualified in the 1970s,' says Professor Richards.

'It is important that we press on with these changes as cancer will become ever more common as more people live longer.'

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