Analysis

Cancer treatment backlog: what’s gone wrong and how to fix it

Nurses in rapid diagnostic centres, one-stop clinics and other services are striving to clear treatment backlogs, but urgent and coordinated action is needed

Nurses in rapid diagnostic centres, one-stop clinics and other services are striving to clear treatment backlogs, but urgent and coordinated action is needed

  • Recovery in cancer services has stalled, with numbers starting treatment in England stuck at just above pre-COVID levels
  • A backlog of 32,000 cases in England could take until 2027 to clear, according to one estimate, with similar problems elsewhere in the UK
  • Diagnostic centres in high streets and one-stop hospital clinics are among initiatives that could signal the way forward

This time last year it looked like cancer services were back on the road to recovery. The number of people starting treatment was on the rise and had even nudged

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