LOCAL MP Russell Brown has warned that rising cancer rates are “one of the greatest threats facing our generation”, as new figures show that four in 10 people will suffer the disease during their lives – up from three in 10 just 10 years ago.
He says the need to re-double our efforts into cancer research reinforces the importance of protecting the NHS and he is concerned about the long term effects of cuts in the health service.
The figures have been revealed by Macmillian Cancer Support and are drawn from projections published two years ago in the British Journal of Cancer, which concluded that at the end of 2008 there were two million cancer survivors in the UK. That figure is rising ever year and is expected to reach four million by 2020.
In 2008, 310,000 people were diagnosed with cancer and 157,000 people died from the disease. Overall, cancer accounts for 42 percent of total deaths in the UK.
Russell Brown said: “Cancer rates are rising at shocking speed and cancer is one of the greatest threats facing our generation. It’s deeply worrying that more and more people are now getting cancer, with far more living with cancer today than even a decade ago.
“Four in ten people will now get cancer at some point in their lives and it really does touch everyone in the country.
“A lot of solid research is being done into the disease, but these alarming figures show how important it is that we re-double our efforts. It’s a long term fight and the work done now will lead to treatments and hopefully cures in the coming years. That’s why I’m so concerned about the long term effects of cuts in the health service, because cancer rates are going to continue to rise and investment must be maintained if we want to improve cancer outcomes.”