Cancer services in England

It is vital that the NHS works well for cancer patients. We therefore monitor and analyse the state of cancer services in the NHS, and call for improvements to ensure cancer patients get the best care possible. For example, we regularly monitor cancer waiting times that are published across the UK as these are an indicator of NHS performance.

In England, we are calling on the Government to increase investment and support in cancer services to ensure that the NHS can meet the rising patient demand, so that our cancer outcomes can match the best in the world.

In September 2014, we published a report “Measuring up? The health of NHS cancer services” (below). This report analysed state of cancer services following years of financial constraint and the biggest re-structure in the NHS’s history. It found that while services have coped well with rising demand, cracks are starting to appear, and a number of challenges were reported, including:

  • A lack of capacity to respond to rising demand;
  • The loss of national and local leadership and infrastructure;
  • Fragmentation of commissioning across the patient pathway;
  • Variation in understanding of roles and responsibilities of new NHS organisations

We continue to keep a close eye on developments across the UK.


Cancer Research UK response to the NHS Mandate consultation

November 2015

Download response [PDF]


Measuring up? The health of NHS cancer services

An evaluation of the current state of cancer services in England, which builds on our 2012 report

September 2014

Download executive summary [PDF]

Download full report [PDF]

Cancer Services: Reverse, Pause or Progress?

The NHS reforms and efficiency savings: an early assessment of the impact on cancer services in England

December 2012

Download executive summary [PDF] 

Download recommendations [PDF]

Download full report [PDF]

Delivering world-leading cancer services

Part one: An analysis of the funding context for cancer services in England

Download full report [PDF]

Part two: expert opinions on the changes required to bridge the outcomes gap with comparable countries

Download full report [PDF]

September 2015

For parliamentarians

See how early diagnosis is going in your local area

Please contact Sara Bainbridge, to request local cancer statistics for your local area in pdf format, with suggestions for action from Cancer Research UK.

Contact us

Get in touch with our policy team to find out more information about our policy on NHS cancer services.

Call our policy team for more information.

020 3469 8360

Email the team

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