BIR response to increase in funding for Cancer Drugs Fund

The BIR welcomes the increase in cancer drugs funding to and estimated £340m, following the outcome of the NHS Cancer Drugs Fund review on 12 January 2015.

However, funding for advanced radiotherapy techniques falls far behind that of chemotherapy when radiotherapy cures more patients than chemotherapy alone. Second only to cancer surgery, radiotherapy is involved in 40 per cent of cases where cancer is cured. It is estimated that radiotherapy is the primary treatment used in 16% of patients who are cured of their cancer. By comparison, chemotherapy is the primary modality in only 2%.[1]

The BIR calls for an increase in radiotherapy funding alongside complex chemotherapy drugs.

[1] Einhorn J et al 1996 Radiotherapy for Cancer, vol 1. Acta oncologica 35 (supp 6) 1-100 and (supp 7) 1-152

IAEA 2010 - Planning National Radiotherapy Services: A Practical Tool.


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