Number of cancer patients waiting twice as long as they should to start cancer ... trends now

Number of cancer patients waiting twice as long as they should to start cancer ... trends now
Number of cancer patients waiting twice as long as they should to start cancer ... trends now

Number of cancer patients waiting twice as long as they should to start cancer ... trends now

The number of cancer patients waiting twice as long as they should to start treatment has doubled since 2020, figures show.

Almost 16,000 patients have waited more than four months to receive cancer care after receiving an urgent referral over the past four years.

This is twice as long as the NHS target which requires treatment to start within two months of when cancer is first suspected.

Experts described the delays as 'worrying', warning long waits now could cost lives in years to come.

Analysis by the Liberal Democrats showed 6,334 patients waited over 124 days last year - over double the 2,922 in 2020.

The number of cancer patients waiting twice as long as they should to start treatment has doubled since 2020, figures show (Stock Photo)

The number of cancer patients waiting twice as long as they should to start treatment has doubled since 2020, figures show (Stock Photo)

Almost 16,000 patients have waited more than four months to receive cancer care after receiving an urgent referral over the past four years (Stock Photo)

Almost 16,000 patients have waited more than four months to receive cancer care after receiving an urgent referral over the past four years (Stock Photo)

More than 1,100 cancer patients were left waiting more than 6 months to start treatment last year, according to results from a Freedom of Information request.

Data was received from 69 out of 137 acute health trusts in the UK, meaning the true numbers will be far higher.

Long waits at University Hospitals Leicester almost quadrupled with 484 patients spending more than four months on the waiting list compared to 122 in 2020.

Some 163 were kept waiting for more than 6 months, a more than five-fold rise from 31 over the same period.

Similarly, Leeds Teaching Hospitals saw 303 patients wait four months last year, compared with 120 in 2020.

One patient at the Frimley NHS Foundation Trust, Surrey, started treatment more than two years - 811 days - after first being urgently referred.

Another at the Princess Alexandra Hospital Trust, Essex, waited 505 days to receive treatment,

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