Intended for healthcare professionals


Cancer care: Staff shortages are limiting progress in England, says expert panel

BMJ 2022; 376 doi: (Published 31 March 2022) Cite this as: BMJ 2022;376:o862
  1. Shaun Griffin
  1. London

The UK government has been given an overall rating of “inadequate” by a panel of experts for its progress against commitments on cancer services in England.

The panel, which was commissioned by the House of Commons Health and Social Care committee, gave Care Quality Commission-style ratings to five specific pledges in four policy areas: workforce, diagnostics, living well with and beyond cancer, and technology and innovation.

Although the panel rated progress as “good” against targets to expand workforce capacity and skills by 2021, it found that the workforce targets themselves “fell woefully short of demand on the ground.”1 And, while some progress had resulted from investment in diagnostics and innovative technologies and treatments, the panel said that the lack of adequate long term planning and investment regarding the cancer workforce …

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