If you're part of the cancer community, you'll no doubt have heard about the government's 10 Year Cancer Plan. It's a massive push to improve the number of people who are diagnosed at an early stage, boost the cancer workforce, intensify research and deliver more personalised care before and after treatment. Sounds good right? In theory yes. But as part of #OneCancerVoice (basically the Avengers of the cancer community), we've joined with 53 other charities to create 10 tests to hold the government accountable to those plans.

Along with charities like our pals at Young Lives vs Cancer and Teenage Cancer Trust (to name just a couple) we're calling on the government to make sure they do as they say they're going to over the next 10 years. Amongst other things, we want them to:

  • Make sure the public is aware of the risk factors, signs and symptoms of cancer and act on them by helping to improve the numbers of people who present at their GP's surgery with complaints
  • Improve the numbers around early diagnosis so 78% of people are diagnosed at stage one or stage two
  • Make sure every person with cancer can access the treatment they need, at the right time, for the best outcomes. We want the government to make sure Cancer Waiting Time targets are met across the country
  • Give everyone with cancer a needs assessment and personalised care plan to support their health and wider wellbeing needs by 2032
  • Meaningfully decrease cases of cancer where inequalities are the cause

#OneCancerVoice represents a community of over 50 cancer charities and together we represent millions of people living with cancer. The 10 Year Cancer Plan and the Call for Evidence was a welcome opportunity for us all to share our voices and experiences but, as far as we're concerned, people living with cancer have *got* to be at the heart of cancer care and support and at the heart of the development of these services. 

We're really thrilled to be part of #OneCancerVoice and to make sure we can shout about the needs of people who are diagnosed with cancer in their 20s or 30s, an age group which is so often forgotten. As a unit, #OneCancerVoice have drawn on our collective experiences from supporting people living with cancer, research, data and insight, to set out what actions Government and the NHS need to take to ensure people diagnosed with cancer in England get the very best care and treatment.

The government learned a lot from Covid-19. The pandemic showed just what can happen when we unite against a common threat. They need to take those lessons and apply them to cancer care. But the pandemic has affected cancer care with an estimated 33,000 people missing from the system. Our survival continues to lag behind the best performing countries in the world. There is an urgent need to level up by focusing on inequalities across the cancer pathway so that everyone gets the very best cancer care.

We're looking forward to seeing how the government faces up to the challenges these tests face.