Posted on Tuesday 24 January 2023

in News

Young Lives vs Cancer and CCLG call for a Children and Young People’s Cancer Plan

Today (Tuesday 24th January) the Secretary of State for Health and Social care has announced that the government will develop and publish a “Major Conditions Strategy”. The Strategy is set to include several major conditions, including cancer and mental health, alongside cardiovascular diseases, respiratory diseases, dementia and musculoskeletal disorders.  

As leading charities for children and young people with cancer, Young Lives vs Cancer and CCLG welcome the commitment to delivering a Strategy which will aim to address the needs of those living with cancer. It is critical that within a strategy that covers several largely adult focused conditions, that the bespoke needs of each group are not overlooked.  

However, we know that cancer is still the biggest killer of children and young people under 25 by disease in the UK, and over 4,000 young people are diagnosed every year. After a year since the government declared a “national war on cancer” in 2022, it is disappointing that today’s announcement did not mention children and young people with cancer, and how the government intends to ensure that their unique needs are addressed through any government strategy.  

This is why together we are on a mission to call for a Children and Young People’s Cancer Plan, to ensure that their unique and critical needs are recognised, understood, and addressed. We want to work together as a sector with the Department of Health and Social Care to see a fully resourced, long-term strategy put in place to provide the care and support needed to radically improve experiences and outcomes for children and young people with cancer. 

Rachel Kirby-Rider, Chief Executive at Young Lives vs Cancer said: “Young cancer patients deserve better than this. It’s been a year since the government declared a war on cancer, but so far nothing has been done. Children and young people with cancer have unique needs and require a bespoke plan to make sure they are met. Young Lives vs Cancer and CCLG understand their needs and want to work with the Department of Health and Social Care to ensure there is a long-term strategy put in place to provide the care and support needed.” 

Ashley Ball-Gamble, Chief Executive at CCLG said: “Children and young people with cancer are too often overlooked in strategies, plans and guidance that attempt to address the needs of all those living with cancer, and the unique needs of this age group remain unaddressed. Our charities understand the needs, gaps and challenges in the care and support of children and young people with cancer, and stand ready to work alongside the Department of Health and Social Care in delivering a bold and ambitious plan to change the future for our patients and their families.” 

Our Call for a Children and Young People’s Cancer Plan

4000 children and young people are diagnosed with cancer every year. They need a Children and Young People’s Cancer Plan to supports their unique needs.

You can view our Children and Young People’s Cancer Plan here

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