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  • Health & Medicine

Making Welsh cancer services world-class

by Jon Spiers | Analysis

4 March 2011

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The Welsh have voted yes in a referendum

Wales has said a resounding ‘Yes’ in the referendum on direct law-making powers for the Welsh Assembly. This means the Assembly will soon be able to pass laws on issues which until now have required permission from politicians in Westminster.

The Welsh Assembly is already responsible for health and science issues affecting Wales. That’s why we’ve been working with the 60 Assembly Members (AMs) in the National Assembly for Wales for several years, advising them on health policy and developments in cancer research. We help organise the Wales Cancer Conference to bring together patients, scientists and politicians from across the country.

The upcoming elections

We want to ensure that cancer remains one of the main health priorities for the Welsh Assembly Government. In the run-up to the 2011 National Assembly Elections this May, Cancer Research UK has produced ‘How can you help us beat cancer?‘, a manifesto setting out our proposals for the political parties about cancer and science.

With concerted action, we could make cancer outcomes for patients in Wales among the best in Europe within a decade. If we’re going to achieve that goal, the next Welsh Assembly Government needs to develop a comprehensive cancer plan that includes measures to:

  1. Prevent more cancers by tackling factors like smoking and obesity
  2. Improve the early diagnosis of cancer so people get treated faster
  3. Ensure access to world-class cancer treatments like radiotherapy, surgery and chemotherapy
  4. Tackle cancer inequalities so everyone benefits from better cancer services, regardless of where they live or how well-off they are
  5. Protect our position at the forefront of medical research so we can keep on making vital discoveries in the fight against cancer

We’ve asked those standing as candidates in the Assembly elections to commit to beat cancer by signing up to our campaign.

If you live in Wales, you can help by using our simple online tool to email your local candidates.

We’ve already had great success with several of the parties backing our call for a comprehensive cancer plan for Wales. We’re looking forward to seeing more details of these proposals in their election manifestos.