LUNG cancer patients in Kirklees have one of the worst survival rates in the country, a study has revealed.
Patients treated in this area had only a 4.9% survival rate in the five-year period examined in the study, compared to 13% in Harrow.
The statistics also show that lung cancer patients treated in the Thames Valley area lived 224 days after diagnosis compared to 177 days in Yorkshire, with a national average of 188.5 days.
Today’s report, produced by The Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation, further highlights how the quality of treatment also differs significantly from one part of the country to another, creating a ‘post code lottery’ of patient care.
The foundation took on the name of the Scholes-born entertainer after he lost his battle with lung cancer in 1993.
The charity has carried out vital research into the disease including this latest report published today which will be launched in the House of Commons.
Patients treated by Kirklees PCT between 1998 and 2002 had only a 4.9% survival rate in the five year period, compared to 13 % in Harrow.
Lung cancer patients treated by doctors in the Thames Valley area lived 224 days after diagnosis compared to 177 days in Yorkshire, compared to a national average of 188.5 days.
The charity’s chief executive Dr Rosemary Gillespie has condemned the geographical inequalities and called for improvements in regions where there is a poor prognosis for patients.
She said: “Despite recent advances, lung cancer remains a devastating disease and the most common cause of cancer death in England.
“Your chance of surviving lung cancer and receiving a treatment which could benefit you should not be decided by where you live in the country.
“Sadly, it is clear that this is indeed the case and there is significant geographical variation in patient survival and patient access to care and treatment.
“We hope this report will act as a tool to help bring those areas with a poorer service and outcomes up to the standard of the best, so we can improve the experience of all lung cancer patients and save lives.”
The report has identified a difference in mortality rates with Liverpool Primary Care Trust (PCT) recording the highest (88.9% per 100,000 of the population and Herefordshire (31.1%) the lowest.
Kirklees recorded a 44.5% mortality rate between 2004-2006 with Calderdale slightly higher at 45.2%.
The chances of surviving for a year are similarly varied.
At the top end, some 43.7% of those who receive care from Kensington and Chelsea PCT will survive for a year, compared with only 25 out of a 100 lung cancer patients who fall under the remit of Kirkless PCT.
People living in deprived areas are less likely than others to have received chemotherapy treatment than others, the report concluded.
It also showed a significant difference across the country in the number of days a patient spends in hospital after being admitted as an emergency.
Patients cared for by Kirklees PCT in 2009/10 stayed in hospital twice as long as patients treated by Great Yarmouth and Waveney PCT.
The average duration was five days.
Kirklees performed better in planned lung cancer surgery with patients staying on average 3.5 days in the same period.
The report analysed data from a variety of sources including the Department of Health, Cancer Research UK and the National Cancer Intelligence Network, an organisation which drive improvements in standards of care.