Health

Britain lagging 20 years behind Europe in bowel, prostate and breast cancer care, with survival rates 'stuck in the noughties', major analysis reveals


Cancer survival in the UK lags decades behind countries such as Sweden and Denmark, analysis has found.

The most recent figures available for prostate, bowel, breast and cervical cancer show UK survival is ‘stuck in the noughties’ and only just reaching levels that some other European countries achieved in the early 2000s.

Macmillan Cancer Support conducted the analysis, which looks at how the UK is faring compared to countries with comparable health systems.

Its experts estimate that bowel cancer survival for women is 20 years behind Sweden, which had better five-year-survival at the turn of the Millennium than in England did in 2020.

The ‘shocking’ survival data shows 57.6 per cent of women in England now live for at least five years after diagnosis, compared to 72.7 per cent in Denmark, 71.7 per cent in Norway and 70.6 per cent in Sweden.

The most recent figures available for prostate, bowel, breast and cervical cancer show UK survival is 'stuck in the noughties' and only just reaching levels that some other European countries achieved in the early 2000s (file image)

The most recent figures available for prostate, bowel, breast and cervical cancer show UK survival is ‘stuck in the noughties’ and only just reaching levels that some other European countries achieved in the early 2000s (file image)

Similarly, survival data from Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland found them to be trailing by 10 to 15 years when compared to Sweden and Norway.

Prostate cancer survival- which the Mail has campaigned on for 25 years – remains a decade behind the Scandinavian countries.

Five-year survival in England currently stands at 88.5 per cent compared with 95 per cent in Sweden, 94.8 per cent in Norway and 90.2 per cent in Denmark.

Similarly, just 57.6 per cent of men with bowel cancer are alive five-years later, significantly lower than the 73.2 per cent in Denmark, 70 per cent in Norway and 69.4 per cent in Sweden.

Breast cancer survival in England is also a decade behind Sweden and Denmark, while Scotland and Northern Ireland are a decade behind Sweden.

The data also showed that cervical cancer survival in England is 25 years behind Norway, which achieved a higher survival between 1992 and 1996 than England has now.

Gemma Peters, Macmillan Cancer Support’s chief executive officer, said: ‘Behind today’s shocking data are thousands of real people whose entire worlds have been turned upside down by cancer.

‘It’s clear that cancer care is at breaking point, but this is a political choice and better is possible.

‘We urgently need the next UK government to prioritise a long-term cross-government strategy that revolutionises cancer care and ensures everyone with cancer has access to the care they need, every step of the way.’

The UK has long been shown to have some of the worst cancer survival rates in Europe but this uses the most recent data, giving a fuller picture.

Breast cancer survival in England is also a decade behind Sweden and Denmark, while Scotland and Northern Ireland are a decade behind Sweden (file image)

Breast cancer survival in England is also a decade behind Sweden and Denmark, while Scotland and Northern Ireland are a decade behind Sweden (file image)

It comes the day after new data revealed more than 100,000 patients were diagnosed with cancer in A&E over the past five years.

A report by Cancer Research UK last week warned 380,000 cancer patients have faced ‘untold suffering’ as a result of treatment delays over the past decade.

In the latest comparison, Macmillan compared the UK to Sweden, Norway and Denmark as they have similar healthcare systems and have high-quality cancer data.

An NHS spokesman said: ‘The NHS is seeing and treating record numbers of people for cancer, with more people diagnosed at an earlier stage than ever before, and survival rates in England at an all-time high.

‘It is transforming and expanding its innovative screening programmes including lung checks in supermarket car parks, at home bowel cancer tests and using AI to spot skin cancer, making it easier than ever before to get checked, so please take up your screening invitation when asked – it could save your life.’



READ SOURCE

Leave a Reply

This website uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you accept our use of cookies.